$1.4B Chase Center Completed on Schedule
Earlier this month, joint venture Mortenson and Clark Construction Group announced the substantial competition of the $1.4 billion San Francisco Chase Center in a press release.
The JV officially handed over the keys to the sports and entertainment complex on Aug. 1, ending a 30-month-long construction endeavor that took over five years of intensive planning.
Building the Structure
Leading more than 260 firms made up of engineers, subconsultants, trade contractors and vendors, Mortenson | Clark worked side-by-side with the Golden State Warriors’ organization, owner’s representative CAA ICON and the project’s design team, which included architects MANICA, Kendall Heaton Associates and Gensler.
Last year in February, construction was reportedly moving at a timely pace, with only 20 months left to complete in time for the Warriors first game. However, reports also claimed that the Warriors were failing to uphold agreements assigning 50% of stadium work to small businesses, a requirement set by the city of San Francisco for redeveloping areas.
At the time, 85% of work was assigned on the stadium, with small business only accounting for 18% of that total. Less than half of the small businesses were based in the city, even though local endeavors are supposed to take preference in the bidding process. Less than 2% of arena work was assigned to minority-owned small businesses, with only 1.4% being given arena construction work.
With 15% of the project left to be assigned, Matthew Ajiake, President of the San Francisco Bay Area Small Business Council, hoped that more small businesses would be hired.
Months later, in September, a major milestone for the project had been reached as the Chase Center topped out. SME Steel Contractors installed nearly 10,600 tons of steel for the skeleton, totaling roughly 17,000 tons at the time.
With the help of 4D modeling and an innovative construction approach, the JV was able to complete the project through four structural cores. Under the plan, each project quadrant had its own schedule for concrete, steel and enclosure while each level had separate plans for mechanical, electrical, plumbing and finishes. This ensured the quickest construction rate possible, according to the JV.
All the while maintaining a clean safety record demonstrated by incident rates six times below the industry standard, crews were able to place as much as $2.8 million worth of work daily at peak construction, with as many as 1,500 craftworkers on site at one time.
“Chase Center is the result of the significant contributions of nearly 9,800 craftworkers—a large contingent from San Francisco—all coming together to deliver a world-class facility that San Francisco can be proud of,” said Trevor DeLong, a senior superintendent at Mortenson | Clark in charge of field operations on the project.
“Mortenson | Clark and our partners worked together to build a culture on site that fostered productivity and collaboration, while maintaining a laser focus on safety, every day, without compromise. It was an extraordinary team effort.”
The site was posted up at the center of an 11-acre site sits the newly dubbed “Thrive City,” complete with two 11-story office buildings, 29 unique retail locations, a glass-enclosed gatehouse, 3.2 acres of publicly accessible plazas and open space, and a 925-space subterranean parking structure.
According to the release, the Chase Center is equal part sports arena and performance hall. When entering either of the two building entrances, visitors are met with a curtain wall that expands up to 75 feet high.
Home of the six-time NBA Champions Golden State Warriors, the arena hosts 18,000 seats within a flexible bowl that can be reconfigured to accommodate sell-out crowds or play host to more intimate theatre performances. The arena also features 44 club suites, 32 courtside lounges, 60 theatre boxes, premium lounges and concourse areas complete with various local food and beverage options.
In total, project’s campus totals more than 2 million square feet spread across the five structures that have since been built.
“A project of this scale and complexity doesn’t happen without trust and collaboration—among our partners in the field and throughout every level of this team,” said Jim McLamb, project director for Mortenson | Clark.
“We had an exceptional pool of talented and determined project partners, all rowing in the same direction and working toward the same goal. At the end of the day, that translated into a high-quality end-product delivered on time, and in the safest manner possible.”
Officially debuting in September for a joint Metallica and San Francisco Symphony concert, the Chase Center promises more concerts and events to follow, including the first Warriors game at their new home court against the Los Angeles Lakers on Oct. 5.
The Warriors have also proposed building a hotel and up to 24 condos next to the center, although few details have been released at this time. However, what has been reported is that the future hotel will be operated by SH Hotels and Resorts, an affiliate of Starwood Capital Group and would feature 142 rooms.
If approved by the San Francisco Office of Community Investment and Infrastructure and other city agencies, the development would replace an already planned and approved 24,000-square-foot retail building, with construction breaking ground in 2021 and completing sometime in 2023.