On Wednesday, June 7th, the Holder-Hunt-Moody-Russell Joint Venture threw a Topping Out Celebration and Luncheon at the Mercedes-Benz stadium. All the firms working on the project were invited to celebrate the hard work everyone has put in to get the stadium completed.
A group of us arrived at the stadium and were given hardhats, neon-green safety vests, protective eyewear, and a raffle ticket. We were then escorted through a short walkway to the elevator and lifted to the main concourse. There, we exited left, following the crowd and delicious smells. Fox Bros and Delia’s Chicken Sausage provided the food. For many of us, this was the first time seeing the inside of the stadium. As we headed toward the food lines, it was becoming increasingly clear that when it comes to stadiums in the US, there is no analogue. The architecture is unique and the fan experience is going to be first class.
The closest comparison would be the AT&T Stadium in Dallas. In fact, WorkingBuildings prepared by collecting all the lessons learned we could from the AT&T team. Everyone we talked to said there would be unexpected issues. They also said that planning for the unexpected on a project of this magnitude is a tall task. So before we started our work at Mercedes-Benz, we developed a plan to fit our solutions into the evolving characteristics of the project.
Well, the efficiency and effectiveness with which the entire Holder-Hunt-Moody-Russell Joint Venture team operates is nothing short of spectacular. The team communicates well and has maintained its agility throughout. There are somewhere around 2500 people involved, and they’re united by the common goal of finishing the stadium on schedule.
We learned on our visit two weeks ago that it’s not done yet, but the finish line is in sight. And make no mistake: The new Mercedes-Benz Stadium is awesome. Viewed from the connector or I-20, the thing looks bound for outer space. And, to be fair, there may be enough thingamajigs and doohickeys to get it there. We’ll just have to wait and see.