Chamberlin Plays a Part in Sooner Tradition at University of Oklahoma's Memorial Stadium

In hard hats rather than football helmets, Chamberlin’s team entered the University of Oklahoma’s Memorial Stadium in the summer of 2002 with a tight-time table and a huge task at hand. Chamberlin was one of the first contractors on the job and was part of the team of many who tackled the $65 million stadium project that entailed renovating all facility structures and amenities, replacing current seating and adding new seating- including 2,200 club seats and 27 sky suites – to bring seating capacity to more than 80,0000.

Chamberlin’s $1.3 million charge was the remedial restoration portion of the project and included cleaning the existing bowl, applying a new deck coating to 500,000 sq. ft., concrete repair and replacement of 3,500 lineal feet of expansion joints.
 
“Our remedial work was done within a new construction project,” explained David Neal, Chamberlin’s Dallas-based Vice President of Operations, “We were literally working on the inside of the existing stadium and new construction was being conducted around us. The situation required a lot of coordination among all those on site.”
 
Chamberlin worked closely with Flintco. Inc., the project’s general contractor, and others to ensure time-tables were met and construction processes didn’t conflict. Chamberlin has enjoyed a relationship with Flintco on other projects including the Sam Noble Museum project, also on campus at OU. In fact, Chamberlin’s reputation for delivering a job well done, on time on past projects with Flintco, played a part in the company’s decision to hire Chamberlin again.
 
With just 20 weeks until the season literally “kicked-off,” Chamberlin moved in to do their scope of work and “kept their eye on the ball.” According to Joe Kuchta, Senior Superintendent on the project, the schedule was compressed by a couple of months during the course of the job. As a result, Chamberlin finished out a Friday afternoon with a 6-man crew and came back Monday morning with 36 men. 
 
Kuchta commented, “We had to bump it up to get the job done in time. Instead of running each part of the job separately, we ran all three processes at the same time; including concrete repair, expansion joint replacements and deck coating. In the end we were more than able to meet the new schedule. We actually finished early.” He went on to say, “Our guys knew the work had to be done right and it had to be done quickly. They were committed to that. And they didn’t let me or our client down.”
 
Just weeks after the Chamberlin team set foot on the stadium’s turf, they finished up and left with time to spare on the “game clock.” Chamberlin completed its portion of the job in time for new stadium seating to be installed prior to the season opener.
 
New construction at the stadium continues this spring and is scheduled to be complete in time for football season this fall. When all is said and done, the stadium will feature a new upper deck on its east side and a fully renovated west side. All this is the fruit of a $100 million fund-raising initiative deemed by university officials as the “Great Expectations Campaign for Sooner Sports…. designed to provide OU’s football program with a national championship-quality facility.“
 
The renovation and expansion of Memorial Stadium is one of the largest scale projects the university has embraced. (Though anyone who works or studies at OU will tell you the entire campus seems to be undergoing improvements.) The university’s Director of Athletics, Joe Castiglione, has been quoted as saying, “It is our dream, our mission, to give OU’s football team and fans a facility in keeping with our status as one of the country’s most storied football programs.” 
 
Chamberlin is proud to have played a small role in adding to the story and the stadium. And as a Texas based contractor, our staff of tried and true Texas college football fans are looking forward to watching our home state teams face off against the Sooners this football season.
Monica Keels
Author: Monica Keels
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