The Atlanta Falcons will play their home opener against the Green Bay Packers this Sunday, 9/17. As exciting as that is on a normal year, this year will be that much more special as it will also mark the opening of their brand new $1.4 billion stadium, the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
The highlight of the new stadium is the pinwheel retractable roof, which opens in 8 minutes and looks like the opening scene of a James Bond movie. There were some scares that it would not be ready for the first game of the season, but Falcons’ officials have stated that the roof could open, weather permitting. An open roof would mark the first time the Falcons have played in an open air stadium at home since 1991, the last year they played in the Fulton County Stadium before moving to the Georgia Dome. The new stadium will not only host the Falcons, but will also host the Atlanta United of the MLS, the 2018 College Football National Championship, the 2019 Super Bowl and the 2020 NCAA Men’s Final Four.
Other than the retractable roof, some of the key features of the Mercedes-Benz are:
- A flexible capacity, which can hold up to 75,000 people for a football game or World Cup soccer match and up to 83,000 for a NCAA basketball game.
- A floor to ceiling window on the northeast corner with a view to downtown Atlanta
- A 360 degree HD video halo board which wraps around the top of the entire stadium. It will be 58 feet tall and span a total of 1100 linear feet in diameter, making it the largest video board in the world.
The construction was carried out by a joint venture called HHRM JV, which is made up of team members from Hunt Construction Group, Holder Construction, H.J. Russell & Co., and C.D. Moody Construction Co.
EarthCam was on site to document the progress for 39 months, from June 2014 to September of this year.
It’s pretty amazing the work that can get done when a lot of resources and money are thrown at one project. Past examples of this include a gigantic sinkhole that was repaired in Japan in just under a week, the complete emergency rebuild of Atlanta’s I-85 overpass that was completed a month ahead of schedule, and this video of 116 excavators working side by side to demolish a 1,640 foot long overpass overnight.
Cameras are EVERYWHERE these days. They’re on sites documenting the full construction process of your project, they’re on projects taking 360 degree progress footage, and most importantly, they’re in your pocket on your smartphone. Having a camera in your pocket at all times can be a good or bad thing, especially for employers, because not only can it make lives much easier for communication and documentation purposes, but it also gives people the chance to show the world when things go absolutely terribly.
With cranes being on many construction sites, it’s easy for workers to get complacent. Hundreds or thousands of construction materials can be lifted by cranes throughout the project, but all it takes is one time for a disaster to occur.
In regards to timelapse videos, it was a big year for sports arenas and the city of Atlanta, Georgia. These types of videos have become more popular in recent years due to the wide availability of documentation services available. Not only that, but civilians who own drones have also taking a liking to their area’s construction sites.
Take a look below at our 7 favorite construction timelapse videos from 2017:
This year saw more videos with environmental considerations taken into account, especially over waterways. Instead of imploding entire bridges, the part that spanned over top of the waterway were manually removed. I've also grown an appreciation for in-depth footage of demolitions that occurred under some interesting conditions. Some of the videos below show some extreme creativity to overcome obstacles.
On Sunday, demolition contractors tried to bring down the upper portion of the Pontiac Silverdome, former home to the Detroit Lions, but several of the explosives didn’t ignite and the structure was still upright after the smoke cleared. After videos of the failed demolition were posted online, the internet had a field day.
The Pontiac Silverdome was the home to the NFL’s Detroit Lions from 1975-2001 and NBA’s Detroit Pistons from 1978-1988. After the Lions opened their new Stadium in 2002, the Silverdome was passed around several times before it closed for the last time in 2013. Earlier this year, the building was condemned and the first round of demolition by implosion was scheduled for Sunday, December 3.
Construction timelapse videos make extremely complicated and long projects look much easier to build than they actually are. The recently opened Louvre in Abu Dhabi took 8 years to complete, but you can watch the full process in only 3 minutes.