SBJ/September 30 - October 6, 2002/Facilities

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  • HNTB-Turner's Invesco experience leads off book of biz buzzer-beaters

    It's been well-documented that the design-build partnership of HNTB Architects and Turner Construction Co. scored a whopping success with its on-time, under-budget delivery of Denver's Invesco Field.

    The feat was impressive enough to be prominently featured in a just-released book about how savvy managers can work productively against the clock.

    Carrison explores the complications of building Denver's new stadium in one "Deadline!" chapter.

    The book, called "Deadline! How Premier Organizations Win the Race Against Time," was written by business consultant and former New York Times syndicated columnist Dan Carrison.

    The Invesco challenge rates the first chapter in "Deadline!" as Carrison chronicles the pressures of building a $400 million stadium — in a setting fraught with political battles, steel shortages and intense public scrutiny.

    In fact, Carrison focuses on the frustrations that beset HNTB and Turner because it seemed everyone in Denver not only felt entitled to critique the project at every turn, but quite a few had the legal authority to slow it down or halt it altogether.

    "An NFL stadium is like the town cathedral of the Renaissance," HNTB director of architecture Terry Miller told Carrison. "It's a community icon."

    Carrison touches on the decision-making difficulties as well, noting that while the delivery date never changed, the construction time frame shrunk to just 27 months. He also touches on matters such as the use of union and non-union labor simultaneously, the fact that the stadium really was built for two owners — the Broncos and the Metropolitan Football Stadium District — and the fact that the design-build team actually had to begin site study work before a referendum approving the facility was passed.

    "We simply had to take the chance," said Rod Michalka, senior vice president for Turner, "but at the same time, we had to minimize the risk, so I went shopping for insurance."

    The design-build group paid a $1 million premium to Lloyds of London to protect itself if the referendum failed.

    Carrison concludes that unprecedented cooperation and communication among HNTB, Turner and others allowed the stadium to open on time and gave everyone a chance to bask in that success.

    TEE IT UP: The company that owns Pinehurst resort in North Carolina has signed an agreement with Club Tee Time of Mission Viejo, Calif., that allows Club Tee Time to offer stay-and-play packages at the famous golf venue.

    ClubCorp, parent of the Pinehurst Co., historically has sold stay-and-play packages itself but hasn't given that right to any other agency.

    Sources at the Pinehurst Co., which owns The Homestead in Virginia and Barton Creek in Texas, indicated stay-and-play deals at those properties also could be developed through Club Tee Time.

    A BETTER IDEA: The network television debut of Detroit's Ford Field was worth about $3.2 million in exposure value to the auto company, according to a Michigan-based company specializing in corporate sponsorships.

    Joyce Julius and Associates noted that Fox's national pregame show originated from Ford Field on Sept. 22, when the Lions hosted the Green Bay Packers.

    According to Joyce Julius, Ford and its brands appeared for 15 minutes, 53 seconds during the live, one-hour telecast. The automaker was mentioned 18 times.

    Joyce Julius calculated value by comparing the in-broadcast exposure to the estimated price of a 30-second commercial — about $85,000 a spot.

    Since Ford's naming-rights deal costs about $1 million a year, the company already has gotten its money's worth.

    Contact Steve Cameron at scameron@sportsbusinessjournal.com.

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