A Hathaway Dinwiddie and AECOM Hunt joint venture are currently preparing the ground, drilling piers and conducting demolition work at the iconic Los Angeles Coliseum, where the team was recently selected to manage a massive, $270 million renovation.
Renovations on the 93,607-seat Coliseum have been designed to both protect its landmark status and classic look, while also improving the fan experience. With the University of Southern California (USC) leading the way, the JV was hired to improve and restore the structure's signature Peristyle; add all new seats with increased legroom; new box suites and lounges; a new press box; upgraded concourses; new concession stands; state-of-the-art audio, video, and Wi-Fi technology; and replace the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems to meet current standards.
“This project is a unique opportunity to improve an iconic stadium while maintaining its historic elements,” said Jeffrey Zunino, senior project manager with AECOM Hunt. He told me that in the early stages of the project, one of the most important things they can do is build upon close relationships with the teams involved in the renovation. "Maintaining close collaboration throughout the project’s lifecycle ensures we continue to deliver at the highest level,” he says.
Abraham Gonzalez, senior project manager, Hathaway Dinwiddie, says that coordinating with team members will be crucial when college and pro football teams as well as other sporting events use the stadium during the construction process.
"When that situation arises, we will provide plenty of safety, separation and security between our construction activities while an event is in progress," says Gonzalez. "Making sure that all materials are safely secured and that there is no access to the construction zone by the public will be of paramount importance. Also, making sure that all temporary fire/life/safety systems, broadcast infrastructure and public facilities are fully functional in all areas of the stadium."
Located in Los Angeles' Exposition Park adjacent to USC campus, the stadium, modeled after the original Roman Colosseum, has been home to USC Trojans football since its opening in 1923. Since then it has hosted countless historic events and is the only facility in the world to play host to two Olympiads, two Super Bowls, one World Series, a Papal Mass and visits by three U.S. Presidents. The structure will again host the Olympic Games in 2028.
One of the key aspects of the project will be the preservation of the Coliseum's iconic Peristyle. This undertaking will include removing the large video boards that were installed for the 1984 Olympic Games. The boards will be removed in order to restore the famed column and archway structure to its original glory. Damaged travertine limestone tiles will be replaced or fixed, the entire structure cleaned, and the restoration of the decorative mural underneath the center arch will also be undertaken.
Replacing the old video boards will be two state-of-the-art, high definition display boards incorporated for the fans enjoyment into the northeast and southeast seating sections, so as to maintain the look of the Peristyle as it was originally intended.
The renovation project is slated to complete in time for the August 2019 start of football season. The Coliseum is jointly owned by the state, the county and the city of Los Angeles, and is managed and operated by USC under a 98-year lease that extends through 2111.