Construction Upcoming on Stadium

Saturday, December 21, 2013

There’s a rivalry within the Salt Lake City suburb offices of SME Steel.

“The company is divided,” Tim Salak, an employee of SME Steel said this week. “One half is 49ers fans. The other half is Denver Broncos fans.”

The West Jordan, Utah-based firm, which specializes in commercial construction of large-scale structures, is leaning toward the 49ers for obvious reasons this year.

In addition to supplying the steel for Levi’s® Stadium, Salak and Co. are charged with a significant ancillary aspect of the project: building the pedestrian bridges that get fans from parking lot to building.

“With the three separate bridges,” Salak said, “fans will have access to the west side of the stadium as well as the suite tower without having to walk very far.”

Work is starting very soon. On Saturday, Dec. 7, a Salak-directed crew began erecting the arched “bow-string” trusses that will serve as the backbone of the bridges. Built on their side in the nearby Great America parking lot, the trusses will be tipped up vertically, set on a semi truck and moved across an existing vehicular bridge to set them in place.

Thirty workers will put in 10-hour work days to finish the three-to-four-month project.

“Most of our crew is from right there in the Bay Area,” Salak said, “and the majority of them are 49ers fans.”

How does Salak brag to people about getting to work on his own favorite team’s new home?

“I like to stick to the numbers,” he said. “It doesn’t leave room for guessing.”

With that in mind:

  • The three bridges comprise 585 tons of steel; their seven trusses – three on the south side, two in the center and two more on the north – weigh 134,000 pounds each.
  • The south bridge, which will weigh 270 tons, will measure 170 feet long, 24 feet high and 57 feet wide.
  • The bridges will have 289 solar panels – the same kind of panels on the suite tower – to collect energy to be used at the venue.
  • Using a 440-ton Manitowoc 1600 crane, which outweighs the crane currently inside Levi’s® Stadium by 90 tons, the bridges are expected to be erected by mid-January; concrete will be poured upon their floors for the next month and a mid-March completion date is the goal.

Andrew Pentis,

← Back to News