Football season is fast approaching and every city throughout America is preparing to cheer on their team. There probably isn’t a team more excited to start their year than the Minnesota Vikings this year, as they finally get to plan in their brand new stadium, the US Bank Stadium.
In January of 2014, demolition officially began on the Metrodome, the Vikings previous stadium. The Metrodome, built by Barton-Malow, was home to the Vikings since 1982 and cost around $55 million ($179 million in 2016 dollars). It was also the home stadium for the Minnesota Twins from 1982 to 2009. For football, the old Metrodome held a maximum capacity of 64,121 people.
For the past 2 and a half years, the brand new US Bank Stadium has been under construction, so the Vikings have had to make a temporary home at the University of Minnesota campus, which opened in 2009 and holds a capacity of 52,525. The US Bank Stadium, which is being carried out by Mortenson Construction, officially opened its doors on Saturday, July 23 to allow fans to get their first look of all the hard work that occurred the past two seasons. In total, the new stadium will hold 66,200 people and cost over $1 billion, almost 20 times what the Metrodome cost to build. By comparison, the outlandish AT&T stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, cost $1.3 billion and holds a capacity of 80,000 people. Though the new stadium will only hold a couple thousand more attendees, it’s actually almost 2 times larger than the old stadium (1,750,000 vs 900,000 square feet), has over twice the amount of restrooms, over a 100 more concession stands, and a video board 13 times larger than the old.
Below you can watch a combined timelapse video of the demolition of the Metrodome and the construction of US Bank Standium. Below that, you can take a tour of the inside of the new stadium alongside of some of the Vikings players.
Inside Tour Video
Almost 7 years ago, construction began on the west side of Manhattan’s $20 billion mixed-use development. On March 15, 2019, Hudson Yards, as the development is known, has officially opened.
Demolitions by implosion can be fun to watch when they go right – or wrong – but nearby residents can be greatly affected by the high powered blasts and huge clouds of debris that follow. A few years ago, a botched demolition in England left dozens of nearby residents unable to return to their homes for several days. Last week, an obsolete Steel Basic Oxygen Plant in Weirton, West Virginia is leaving residents in a similar situation.
Traditional safety training for construction workers includes OSHA 10-hour or 30-hour courses, toolbox talks, and safety inspections. Those training techniques are all important and necessary, but construction workers are an extremely hands-on group of individuals and putting them in real life situations can be much more beneficial to them instead of classroom training.
Over the years, Liebherr, the German Crane Manufacturer, has given us some absolutely amazing videos. For example, they put on a show for their best customers one year and lifted one crane with another crane, which was lifted by a third crane, which was then lifted by a fourth crane. Another video highlighted the 58 cranes that were on site at the same time at the world’s largest airport build in Istanbul. Well, the company is back at it again, this time on top of Europe’s new tallest building.
When we think about historic buildings of ancient times that are still standing, we can stand in awe of the level of detail that was incorporated into designs without modern tools and technology. For a few decades, it seemed like we would never see that type of character in buildings again, but sports stadiums are becoming new modern wonders, pushing the limits of not only what’s capable from a construction standpoint, but also the budgets.
As you may already know, the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks officially opened their new home, the Fiserv Forum, for the 2018-2019 NBA season last October. That new stadium is being heralded as the “World’s First Bird Friendly Arena,” due to many of the design features. Well, since the new one is open, we can only expect that the old, non-bird friendly (I’m assuming) arena has overstayed its welcome and has to go.
Two and a half years ago, I came across one of the most interesting construction projects I’ve ever seen, called The Guedelon Castle. In a world with cordless power tools, smartphones, and tables strewn across the jobsite, the Guedlon Castle is being constructed solely from 13th Century building techniques in Burgundy, France.
Let’s get 2019 started with the first building demolition by implosion of the year.
The Smithsonian channel is airing a series of shows titled America in Color, in which they enhance lost or forgotten video footage of the 1900s, beginning with the 1920s. Part of the first episode in the series shows the men that worked on skyscrapers in New York City and it’s been edited to show color, as opposed to black and white, for the first time.