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SALT LAKE CITY (Tuesday, August 5, 2008) - Real Salt Lake Owner and SCP Worldwide Chairman Dave Checketts today announced that the club has successfully agreed with the Layton-Turner Construction joint venture to accelerate construction in order to accommodate an early opening of the Real Salt Lake Soccer Stadium in Sandy, Utah, allowing RSL to host its final two 2008 regular-season games - Thursday, October 9 vs. New York (8:00 p.m. MT, live on ESPN2) and Saturday, October 18 vs. FC Dallas (7:00 p.m. MT, live on Fox Soccer Channel).
"I would like to express the deepest thanks and sincerest gratitude to Mayor Dolan and the City of Sandy, the Layton-Turner joint venture, Rossetti Architects, the site's thousands of workers who performed nearly five million man-hours of work, and everyone associated with the project in helping our dreams become reality," said Checketts. "Opening ahead of schedule, with both games televised live nationally, enables not only the sporting culture of Utah but also fans of the world's most popular sport to uniquely experience our new home."
"We are elated to have our Stadium, expected to be the finest building in American soccer, opening several weeks early as our surging first-place team makes its 2008 playoff run," said RSL President Bill Manning, also pointing out that Sandy is the home of the 2009 MLS All-Star Game in late July of next year. "Concert-goers, fans of youth sports and entertainment consumers of all types will have an opportunity to experience this world-class venue, now opening on October 9."
Construction on the new stadium began in April of 2007, with scheduled completion in the fall of 2008. The 19-month construction schedule is aggressive, considering the size and scope of the stadium. Daily, nearly 400 construction workers sweated through the heat of the summer and bundled up continuing construction through the Utah winter despite the cold and snow.
"We've made such tremendous progress at the stadium, that an early opening is possible," said David S. Layton, President/CEO of The Layton Companies. "With a concerted effort from the joint venture team and our great subcontractors, we will turn over the stadium three weeks ahead of schedule to accommodate RSL's plans for an early opening."
Field irrigation and drainage systems are complete, and the playing surface is mid-way through a 60-day schedule following installation, allowing the turf to establish its root structure before becoming playable. Construction work also continues in concession areas, administrative offices, and parking areas; seats are currently being installed in the East Side's upper deck. Seating placement inside the main bowl is virtually compete, while glass installation and suite and locker room finish work is ongoing. The structural steel support for the main video screen and scoreboard, in the North End, is complete, with the raising and testing of the highly-anticipated Daktronics videoboard slated for mid-August.