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Two Milestones Reached in Construction of Ken Garff Performance Zone at Rice-Eccles Stadium

Feb 1, 2021

Ken Garff Performance Zone at Rice-Eccles Stadium

Two major milestones were celebrated last week as part of the construction of the Ken Garff Performance Zone at Rice Eccles Stadium. On Wednesdsay, Jan. 27, a ceremonial beam-raising took place to mark the "topping out" of the south end zone expansion project, and on Friday, Jan. 29, the 2002 Olympic Cauldron returned to the stadium site after 350 days away for refurbishment.

Ken Garff Performance Zone at Rice-Eccles Stadium topping out: The final steel beam, signed by donors and administrators, was raised into place last Wednesday. Construction on the Ken Garff Performance Zone is proceeding on schedule through the COVID-19 pandemic and the beam-raising marked a significant milestone.

Members of the Garff family were present and signed the celebratory steel beam that marked the completion of erecting the structural steel. The Garff family pledged over $17 million to the project on the stadium's south end zone.

The expansion and renovation project will enclose the south end zone, add premium seating and increase stadium capacity by nearly 5,000. Scheduled to open later this year, the expansion will house both teams' locker rooms, officials' locker rooms, sports medicine and equipment facilities, and many other spaces dedicated to game-day personnel at field level, plus a large field club.

2002 Olympic Cauldron: The cauldron returned to the University of Utah last Friday with work continuing on its refurbishment to extend its lifespan. Removed in February 2020, the cauldron was transported to an off-site location where all 738 glass panes were removed and the complete structure was sandblasted and refinished.

The returned structure was placed on a newly-constructed 32-foot-tall pedestal, just north of the stadium ticket office. The cauldron was placed without the panes of new high-quality glass, which will be installed on-site. LED lights have also been worked into the framework so the entire structure can be lit for special occasions.

It's anticipated both the Ken Garff Performance Zone and the 2002 Olympic Cauldron will be the completed this summer.