49ers new stadium hits structural steel landmark

Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE

We take a look at the latest landmark the 49ers stadium construction has reached.

Construction continues on the San Francisco 49ers new Santa Clara stadium, and they have reached another big milestone. According to a Tuesday evening press release, the construction project will see the uppermost structural steel beam inserted at the highest point of the stadium on Thursday afternoon.

The steel-work began in July and has been speeding along. Concrete installation has also begun and will pick up steam as the steel installation advances.

The 49ers stadium remains on pace for a 2014 opening. This is of course key if the 49ers want to host Super Bowl L in 2016, following the 2015 season. The Bay Area is competing with South Florida (basically Miami) for the right to host the 50th Super Bowl. The decision will be made next May and I have to think that if the stadium remains on pace at that point, San Francisco/Santa Clara has to be the choice. The 49ers are looking to create one of the most high tech stadiums in the world, which would only add to what is likely to be a huge spectacle for the Super Bowl L.

The 49ers released a few facts about the steel and concrete installation:

  • An American flag and an actual evergreen tree are attached to the beams as a symbol of growth and luck.
  • Approximately 18,000 tons of steel (14,000 pieces) will support the 1.85 million square foot stadium, or the equivalent of 3,000 elephants.
  • The stadium will contain more than 40 million pounds of precast concrete.
  • The stadium will have 10,000 steps and landings, which adds up to more than a mile of steps. If stacked in one building, it would be 580 stories from ground to rooftop.
  • Over 3,000 foundation piles were drilled at an average depth of 55 feet.
  • Over 50 miles of pipe have been laid underground.
  • 29,000 cubic yards of concrete has been poured, equivalent to the foundation slabs for 580 2,000 square-foot homes.
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