BMO Field Expansion
Award of Merit
Owner Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Ltd.
Lead Design Firm Gensler
Contractor PCL Constructors Canada Inc.
Civil Engineer Morrison Hershfield Ltd.
Structural Engineer Entuitive, Thornton Tomasetti (consultant)
MEP Engineer HH Angus, M-E Engineers Inc.
Structural-Steel Contractor Canam Group Inc.
Owner’s Representative Icon Venue Group
Canada’s first soccer-specific stadium, originally built in 2007, was renovated with a flexible design to maintain an intimate environment while having the ability to expand for special events. The original 22,000-seat stadium gained 8,000 permanent seats. Another 8,000 temporary seats can be added for football, outdoor hockey and concerts.
The $150-million project’s new roof canopy encourages a loud and energetic European soccer atmosphere. Tech systems were improved, along with concourse accessibility, concessions, clubs and suites.
Consisting of 30-ft by 180-ft panels that weigh between 150,000 and 180,000 pounds, the east and west roof canopies were built next to the stadium and lifted and installed in sections. Working from outside of the stadium avoided field damage but meant that crane operators had to work blind and depend on radio communications with the raising gangs.
Two lattice-boom crawler cranes helped to install the 1-million-plus-lb south canopy after it was assembled on site as one 377-ft by 68-ft structure. Temporary shoring towers that supported 15 roof girders during construction were removed after all the roof sections were installed and the trusses were bolted.
The fast-tracked project completed 12 months of work in just seven months during the first phase. Conducting precast work at night helped to achieve this feat. The second phase prepared the stadium for its newest tenant: the Canadian Football League’s Toronto Argonauts. Movable stands and a reconfigured field and visiting locker room now accommodate CFL requirements.
Finally, the project team endured the coldest February in Toronto’s history. Winds off Lake Ontario amplified the -13° F temperatures.
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