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Plans announced for RCA Dome demolition in preparation for convention center expansion April 29, 2008

Posted by ICVA Communications in Expansion & New Development.
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INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Stadium and Convention Building Authority (ISCBA) today announced detailed plans for demolishing the RCA Dome to make room for an expansion of the Indiana Convention Center. Taking down the Dome is expected to include a combination of traditional demolition and targeted implosion.

“Last October, we announced the steps and timetable for the removal of the Dome and expansion of the Convention Center,” said David R. Frick, board chairman of the ISCBA. “We’re now able to provide more of the details involved with the project, which will be completed by fall, 2010.”

According to the project’s construction manager, a joint venture of Shiel Sexton/Powers and Sons, the process of demolishing the Dome started in January, as previously announced, with the relocation of major electrical, steam and chilled water lines crossing the site, plus the relocation of a major sewer in South Street. In addition, combined electrical and mechanical systems serving both the Convention Center and RCA Dome needed to be separated. This work is about 90 percent completed and is expected to be finished by early summer.

“In early May, the public will see removal of the RCA signs on the Dome with the street barricades set in place shortly thereafter,” said Tom Scheele, senior vice president of Shiel Sexton Inc. “We then expect to begin demolishing offices, restrooms, meeting rooms and storage areas inside the Dome before the end of spring, which involves the removal of components that don’t comprise the structural fame itself – items such as drywall, acoustical ceilings, doors, carpet and light fixtures.”

Next, according to Scheele, will be the salvage and memorabilia removal starting in July and a month later the deflation of the roof. “Deflation of the roof will be a visual reminder that we are now initiating the structural demolition sequence,” said Scheele.

Scheele said many months of planning and additional discussions with the demolition contractor have resulted in a decision to dismantle about half of the structure with traditional demolition methods and removal of the remaining upper level seating areas with implosion to occur in October.

“Once about two-thirds of the demolition is complete, new construction and Dome demolition will be going on concurrently,” said Scheele. The total demolition is expected to last about five months and will move from north to south so construction can begin on the new three-story Georgia Street entrance expansion.

Scheele also reported that in early summer, contractors will begin construction of new meeting rooms and pre-function space at the northwest corner of the existing Convention Center.

“Maintaining a safe work environment and assuring that the Convention Center will continue to be used during the demolition and new construction are among our highest priorities,” said Frick.

The $275 million Convention Center expansion, when completed and combined with the new Lucas Oil Stadium, will increase the amount of exhibition, meeting room and pre-function space at the two sites from 725,000 to 1.2 million square feet.

The new Convention Center addition includes 63,000 square feet of meeting rooms and 103,000 square feet of pre-function space. New exhibit halls will contain about 254,000 square feet. A new Capitol Avenue entry lobby and pedestrian walkway connecting the Convention Center and the new Stadium also are included.

When the expansion is complete in 2010, the Capital Improvement Board of Managers (CIB) will manage both facilities. The ISCBA is the state agency responsible for financing, designing and constructing both the new Stadium and the Convention Center expansion.

David Sease
Lou Gerig
Sease, Gerig & Associates
(317) 634-1171