The primary designer and builder of the massive $400 million redevelopment of Daytona International Speedway are about to see their work get its first full test.
Two local companies, Southfield-based construction manager Barton Malow Co. and Detroit-based architect Rossetti Associates Inc., led the “Daytona Rising” renovation of the Florida auto track that is home to NASCAR’s iconic Daytona 500.
While there have been races at Daytona since work began in July 2013, the track’s entire mile-long, 101,500-seat grandstand will be open for the first time with this weekend’s “Rolex 24 at Daytona” endurance race.
The Daytona 500 follows on Feb. 21.
The facility was given its certificate of occupancy by the city of Daytona Beach earlier in January. A number of final items (the punch list) are expected to be wrapped up in the next few months to meet the final contract specifications, project backers have said.
Those tweaks are minor and won’t affect the upcoming races.
Perhaps the most notable change to the track was construction of five expanded entrances, billed as “injectors,” that funnel the 100,000-plus fans in and out of the track.
Since work began in 2013, project organizers have said that more than 57,000 pieces of steel weighing a combined 31.6 million tons have been installed, along with 101,500 new and larger grandstand seats from Montreal-based Ducharme Seating International Inc. The track previously had 147,000 seats, and those eliminated were the cheaper backstretch stands.
Seventeen elevators and 40 escalators provide access to three different concourse levels, making the venue more akin to a football stadium than an auto race track. Sixty-plus suites with trackside views were constructed.
The concourses are 11 areas the size of football fields and have food, bars, wi-fi access, merchandise, and TV monitors. A grandstand area called the World Center of Racing is for premium food, merchandise, and entertainment.
The project has doubled the number of restrooms and tripled the number of concession stands, and added a new sound system and more than 1,600 video monitors.
The 2.5-mile tri-oval track opened in 1959 on a 500-acre site at a cost of $3 million. It’s operated by Daytona-based International Speedway Corp. (the same company that owns Michigan International Speedway) on land leased from the Daytona Beach Racing and Recreational Facilities District.
International Speedway, which privately financed the $400 million project, is recouping costs through a blend that includes ticket price increases, corporate hospitality, and the sale of the injector entrance naming rights (to Sunoco, Chevrolet, Toyota and Florida Hospital so far).Anheuser-Busch also extended and expanded its sponsorship deal at the track.
Detroit to Daytona
Daytona Rising is the latest marquee sports project for Barton Malow and Rossetti. It wasn't disclosed how much each was paid for its work on the track.
Here’s a quick look at both companies.
The Maibach family has been involved with Barton Malow since 1925 and acquired majority control in 1961. It has 1,500 employees, 13 offices, and more than $1.5 billion in revenue annually
Sports are one of Barton Malow’s high-visibility niches.
In April 2014, the firm was part of a joint group awarded the construction contract for the $627 million arena set to open in 2016 for the Detroit Red Wings. It also was the general contractor for the team’s current home since 1979, Joe Louis Arena.
Its other signature sports projects have included:
- The $226 million Michigan Stadium expansion and upgrade that finished in 2011.
- The $24.5 million expansion of Spartan Stadium that wrapped up in 2015.
- The $150 million renovation of the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena, Calif., completed in 2014.
- The current construction of three new buildings around Notre Dame’s football stadium at a cost of $400 million.
- A $155 million stadium for Orlando City FC of Major League Soccer that will open in 2016.
It’s part of the four-company consortium hired in 2014 to build a $622 million stadium for the Atlanta Braves. The 41,500-seat ballpark is scheduled to open in 2017.
The company’s first sports work was designing, building and financing the $55.7 million Pontiac Silverdome in the mid-1970s.
ROSSETTI, founded in 1969 by current owner Matt Rossetti’s father Gino, specializes in sports and entertainment projects globally. It has $22 million in 2014 revenue, the most recent figure available.
The firm's basketball work includes design of The Palace of Auburn Hills for the Detroit Pistons, and the Cleveland Cavaliers’ practice facility renovation.
It was hired to design the Los Angeles Lakers’ $80 million corporate headquarters and practice facility scheduled to open in the spring of 2017.
The firm also designed the L.A. Clippers’ 42,500 square foot training facility that opened in September 2008 at a cost of $50 million in Playa Vista, Calif.
In addition to handling the 1988 design of the Palace of Auburn Hills, it has worked on the $40 million worth of subsequent renovations at the arena over the past four years.
ROSSETTI designed Ford Field for the Detroit Lions, which opened in 2002.
Last year, the firm designed The Corner Tap Room at Comerica Park for the Detroit Tigers and concessionaire Sportservice, who converted a coney island inside the ballpark into a 171-seat bistro.
Other recent work the United States Tennis Association’s National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.; and renovations at CenturyLink Field for the Seattle Seahawks, TD Garden for the Boston Celtics, and Breslin Center at Michigan State University.