Company Intends To Replace Metrodome Roof In Time For NFL Season
The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission on Friday selected Birdair Inc. to replace the Metrodome roof, and the New York-based company "believes it can get it done by Aug. 1," according to Dave Orrick of the ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS. MSFC officials said that the $17.9M proposal from Birdair, which "installed the original roof" at the Metrodome, "should allow for safety inspections and issuances of building certificates in time for kickoff on the NFL's first full Sunday of preseason games Aug. 14." Work on the renovation "could begin as early as March 17 and is likely to require at least 10-hour days from workers, Monday through Saturday." MSFC officials cautioned that "weather could foil the plan." MSFC Exec Dir Bill Lester: "There's no cushion in this schedule." If Birdair completes the project by Aug. 1, it will receive a $500,000 bonus. If the company fails, "there will be penalties that will vary, such as $20,000 per day and $700,000 for each missed Vikings home game." The team has "asked the NFL to schedule its first several games on the road, just in case." In the end, the MSFC "expects the total cost of the Dome's debacle to approach $25 million, when all the costs of stabilizing and assessing the massive quilt-like roof are accounted for." The "life expectancy of the new roof is expected to be more than 20 years" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 2/26). MSFC officials said that the Metrodome's new roof "will have a flatter profile and light brown panels that will bleach to white over time." The new panels "will be made of a fiberglass material very similar to the old ones." But MSFC Dir of Facilities & Engineering Steve Maki noted that "one difference fans will notice" is that an "inner liner will not be replaced in the roof's central area, so the interior of the Dome will be brighter" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 2/26).