- The Allegiant Stadium construction team overcame serious challenges to complete the project on time.
- The Mortenson-McCarthy joint construction workers had to complete constructing the stadium in two and a half years from November 2017.
- The major challenges included the international trade war and the coronavirus pandemic.
- The Raiders will use Allegiant Stadium first on September 21, but fans will have to wait until next year to enjoy the venue.
The Raiders will start their debut season in Las Vegas next month in one of NFL’s most costly stadiums. On the other hand, the team that constructed the Allegiant Stadium fought extraordinary challenges to complete the project on a tight deadline.
When the team broke ground in November 2017, they only had two and a half years to complete the 65,000-seat stadium. As the project progressed, they encountered normal hiccups such as cable net system installation problems.
However, some unanticipated things happened. An international trade war threatened steel supplies. Additionally, the coronavirus pandemic not only sickened construction workers but also sidelined other major projects.
Vice president of operations for Mortenson and McCarthy Eric Grenz said Allegiant Stadium was one of the most impressive achievements that either building company had ever done.
Marc Badain, the Raiders President, said that they were very proud of the workers and what they achieved after encountering remarkable challenges.
During the spring, at least a dozen workers tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the temporary closure of affected work areas. Despite the heat, these workers had to wear face masks. Also, part of the work was scheduled for the evenings to reduce the number of people working during the day.
However, the team continued working as some big projects like the MSG Sphere entertainment complex on the Strip halted.
Grenz said it’s amazing to look back at what the team had “been through and what they’ve endured.” He added that most companies would have stopped the project “a long time ago.”
Mortenson-McCarthy disclosed Friday that it had received a certificate of occupancy, meaning the team had finished substantial construction. However, it’s unclear when fans will start enjoying the new stadium.
The pandemic forced the postponement of the first major event initially scheduled for August 22, a Garth Brooks concert, to next year. This week, the Raiders announced they would play this season without fans attending.
The Raiders will host the New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football on September 21 for the first match at Allegiant Stadium.
Grenz said that fans won’t be disappointed when they will finally be allowed in the stadium. He added that the appearance, feel, and amenities of the venue are “second to none.” Grenz said it was “far better than any stadium” he had ever been in.
The stadium has some great features, including a field tray that contains a natural glass field and moves on electrically-powered wheels. Huge sliding doors also open for people to view the Strip.
Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority president and CEO Steve Hill said the stadium will fortify the Las Vegas’ growing reputation as the world’s sports capital and play a major role in the city’s economic recovery.