Excavation for Student-Athlete High Performance Center Underway
BERKELEY - The University of California will implement temporary seismic improvements in California Memorial Stadium as design work for the comprehensive retrofit and modernization of the stadium continues. Construction and installation of the new, interim measures will begin in late April and will be completed prior to the 2009 football season.
In order to assure the life safety of fans and daily occupants, the project will add temporary steel interior braces on the north and south ends of the bowl, where the Hayward fault intersects the stadium. In addition, a temporary covered walkway will be built in the north tunnel as well as at one end of the south tunnel, and the existing scoreboard towers that rise above the stadium's rim will be braced and reinforced. While the impact on the game-day experience is expected to be minimal, Cal football fans and daily occupants will notice changes in the stadium and should be prepared to navigate the modified concourse walkways on the north and south ends. San Francisco-based Forell/Elsesser Engineers, Inc., one of the nation's leading structural and earthquake engineering firms, was responsible for the project's design. The construction plans have also been reviewed and approved by the university's Seismic Review Committee. According to campus officials, design work on the permanent retrofit and renovation project, known as "Stadium West," continues to advance towards completion. Current planning calls for "Stadium West" construction to begin in 2011.
Construction at the site of the Student-Athlete High Performance Center adjacent to Memorial Stadium is well underway, with the excavation and shoring process expected to last approximately four months. Steam lines serving Memorial Stadium have already been moved, and the relocation of utilities, electrical and communications lines and domestic and fire water lines will be finished in mid-May. The wall shoring, just outside the historic west wall of the stadium, will require the drilling of nearly 300 30-inch holes as much as 40 feet into the soil, followed by concrete back-fill into each hole with the insertion of steel I-beams into every third hole. Overall, nearly 70,000 cubic yards of soil will be removed in the excavation. Construction crews are excavating in five-foot increments, starting at the south end of the stadium and working north. Once they reach the bottom, they will start installing utilities, as well as sewer, water and drainage lines before beginning work the foundation for the building. The Student-Athlete High Performance Center, a 142,000 square-foot facility will provide locker rooms, meeting rooms and offices for football and 12 of Cal's Olympic sports. It will also house a state-of-the-art training, applied sports science and medicine complex for year-round access by approximately 450 student-athletes and staff. The building is due to be finished in the fall of 2011.