The exterior shape of the performance enhancement complex expansion to the DakotaDome should be in place by the time students return to campus in August.
Project Manager Lorin Wilcox said much of the exterior work to the building will be completed over the summer when most students aren’t on campus.
“The arena exterior walls will be in place with some final roof trusses to set and exterior sheathing to finish. There will also still be final exterior finishes to place, such as the roofing membrane, but the size and shape of the facility will be evident,” Wilcox said.
Over the summer, the new arena will be attached to the DakotaDome, Wilcox said.
“As part of the project, the DakotaDome and the arena are connected at multiple locations,” Wilcox said. “The connection locations require openings to be cut in the south Dome wall. Before the Dome wall is cut, steel beams and columns will be placed to reinforce the wall.”
Wilcox said the work in the DakotaDome will begin after graduation and be completed by July 4. The work will extend into the Dome’s strength and conditioning office.
Another construction project on campus is the new track and soccer field, which should be completed next spring, Wilcox said.
“The track and soccer facility is supposed to be open for a track meet in April or May of 2016,” Wilcox said. “A lot of that facility will come together over the summer.”
Wilcox said the bleachers at the track and soccer facility will be installed over this summer. The track surface will also be completed over this summer.
Junior Track and Cross Country runner Isaac Allen said the new track will make the University of South Dakota more competitive.
“It’ll make it easier to practice and thus make us better athletes and more competetive,” Allen said.
Herbster said despite any setbacks or disruptions to any activities, both athletes and coaches have been understanding.
“We’ve talked to our coaches and our student-athletes and they’ve been really good. We know through this process there’s going to be periods of being uncomfortable, put out and being inconvenienced,” Herbster said. “The contractors have been good to work with us.”
(Photo: Construction on the new DakotaDome expansion is set to be completed by August. File photo / The Volante)