The Merc’s Mike Rosenberg has the reason why the 49ers and City of Santa Clara are working so hard to get the stadium legally decided: 2014 is the plan. Aiming for a preseason 2014 opening, the team is incentivizing contractors Turner-Devcon to finish by that point by offering a multimillion dollar bonus. They’re also flipping the script a bit by penalizing the contractors for every regular season game missed.
The contract requires Turner-Devcon to start building by July 1 and finish the stadium so it can open by the end of August 2014. If not, the firms would be penalized $6 million for each 49ers game missed, plus daily fines that could hit $20 million.
The penalties are harsh enough that the firms could actually lose money on the deal if they don’t finish the project on time. On the other hand, if they complete the stadium in time for the 2014 preseason, the 49ers will reward the firms with a $5 million bonus.
It’s a highly aggressive schedule, one that the stakeholders will be hard-pressed to achieve. Assuming that the Superior Court strikes down a possible referendum push, the 49ers are aiming for a July start to construction (groundbreaking would occur well before then). That puts the bulk of construction time at 25 months, though it’s likely that they’ll still be buttoning the place down for the two months prior to the 2014 regular season start.
These kinds of incentives are fairly commonplace. Road construction firm C.C. Myers earned a sterling reputation from finishing rebuilds way ahead of schedule of the 10 freeway after the Northridge quake and after the 2007 MacArthur Maze collapse when an overturned tanker caught fire and melted an overhead ramp.
Turner-Devcon is expected to be pretty busy over the next few years as they’re contracted to do the Santa Clara stadium. It’s also likely that they’ll be called upon to work on the Earthquakes stadium and Cisco Field. It’s just too bad that, knowing that the NFL wants the 49ers’ home built ASAP, they’re facilitating it to the best of their ability, approving the G-4 loan and arranging for the additional financing with multiple financial partners. What kind of help are the A’s getting from MLB? They’re on the “front burner”. Supposedly.