Toronto Blue Jays unveil Rogers Centre lower bowl renos

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

The Toronto Blue Jays unveiled the renovated lower bowl at the Rogers Centre last week.

Over the past six months, PCL Construction has managed a staggering level of coordination and activity, involving an average of 350 workers on-site daily. The first phase focused on the outfield, building social spaces and new seating arrangements, while the second phase concentrated on overhauling the 100 level infield, demolishing and rebuilding the seating bowl, and adding world-class player facilities and premium clubs.

“With a staggering level of coordination and activity averaging 350 workers on site daily, six to seven days per week over the past six months, our workforce was fueled by the passion of being part of a project that provides a sense of community,” PCL posted on social media after the unveiling. “Thank you to everyone involved in bringing the Toronto Blue Jays’ reimagined vision for Rogers Centre to life!”

The $300 million renovation project came with challenges, including the removal and recycling of millions of pounds of materials.  About 6,500 cubic metres of concrete was poured and 3.3 million pounds of structural steel was installed.

With a fast-tracked construction timeline, formwork for the new build began and the first new concrete was poured on the same day demolition was completed (Oct. 26).

  • Approximately 500 truckloads worth of concrete are expected to be poured to complete the project.
  • On November 9, a major piece of mechanical equipment was delivered by crane from Bremner Blvd. into Rogers Centre through an opening in the roof.
  • The first structural steel column was put up on November 13. A total of 2.4 million pounds of structural steel has been fabricated offsite and will be installed at Rogers Centre to complete the project.

With phase two described as “an entirely re-envisioned lower bowl from foul pole to foul pole” by Mark Shapiro, President of the Blue Jays, the project modernized the iconic stadium.

First announced in July 2022, the multi-year, nearly $400 million CAD, privately funded renovation has progressively transitioned the 35-year-old stadium to feel more like a ballpark through a series of projects aimed at bringing fans closer to the action, introducing modern fan experiences, and overhauling player facilities.

The first phase of work focused on the outfield from foul pole to foul pole, creating five distinct Outfield District social spaces, available to all fans with a game ticket, as well as raised bullpens and new outfield and 500 level seats.

While work will continue into the season to put the finishing touches on player facilities and premium clubs, an average of 350 Canadian tradespeople on-site daily logged approximately 400,000 worker hours to complete the demolition and rebuild of the 100 level seating bowl.

“Being baseball ready for the Toronto Blue Jays Home Opener on April 8 is a tremendous accomplishment that we take pride in celebrating with our partners, including more than 2,500 talented tradespeople,” said Monique Buckberger, Vice President and District Manager, PCL Constructors Canada Inc. “Our workforce was fueled by the passion of being part of a project that provides a sense of community. Thank you to everyone involved in bringing the Toronto Blue Jays’ reimagined vision for Rogers Centre to life.”

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