Camp Randall Stadium Update

The latest update on the renovation project at Camp Randall Stadium, following a tour of the construction site Wednesday afternoon.

Members of the media were treated to a six-week update of the renovations at Camp Randall Stadium this afternoon. Anyone that's driven nearby the stadium area knows the project is very extensive and has caused a lot of traffic/parking concerns in the vicinity. But Project Executive Jim Schumacher insisted Wednesday afternoon that everything was on schedule and going as planned.

Here are a few notes regarding the progress of the stadium renovation project:

- The Cullen-Smith construction team handling the renovations are busy working on "Package 1" renovations, which are scheduled to be completed by the end of the 2004 season. A second set of renovations, "Package 2" will be complete by the end of the 2005 season. There will be no stage of the renovations completed by the start of the 2003 season. But Schumacher said fans can expect no major problems in enjoying Badger football this fall. The construction crew will be operating on a four-day work week, and will clear out all of its construction materials from Friday-Sunday of home game weekends. This is the same process that Penn State went through during its stadium renovation. The only major difference in the gameday experience is that Lot 18 and Lot 19 will no longer be open for parking.

- The installation of UW's new "Field Turf" will begin the first week of June. It will take approximately six weeks to install the new field, and there are strict orders for the job to be completed before the end of fall camp. There has been no decision on how the original turf at Camp Randall will be used. It will likely be sold for use as an indoor soccer field or something along those lines. Pieces of Camp Randall's turf will not be offered up for sale to Badger fans. Schumacher said the turf at the McClain Center is considerably more valuable than the Camp Randall field.
- There was an incident earlier this week in which two young boys walking home from school decided to jump the fence and begin to play around with some spray paint. They were immediately apprehended, and Schumacher said there is tight security around the construction project.

- The beginnings of the new fifth-level concourse will be visible by fans in attendance this fall. There will eventually be a concourse atop the stadium with bathrooms, souvenir stands and refreshment stands, etc. There will also be glass panels for club seating and the coaches offices, which will be located on the eighth floor of the new building. Handicapped seating will be wrapped around the fifth-level concourse of the stadium as well, with elevator access.

- There is currently only one operational entrance to Camp Randall stadium (for business purposes this summer), Gate 15. This will remain the only entrance to the stadium until the completion of the project.

- While seats will be added to the overall capacity of the stadium, the bottom five rows of the stadium will be eliminated. As it stands now, the bottom five rows are obstructed view seating. There will no longer be obstructed view seating in the stadium.

- Many of the new seats will be located at the south endzone. Construction for these additional seats will begin immediately after the 2003 season, around Thanksgiving. This is a priority, because the university has already included revenue for those seats in its future budgets, and sold seats that do not yet exist.

- Sixty percent of the east side "superstructure" foundations are complete at this point…structural steel erection began on May 12, and pre-cast erection began on May 15. The erection of the east side superstructure will take approximately seven months.

- The Athletics Office Building excavation began in late March, and the foundations will be complete in June, 2003.

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