Time lapse Coliseum conversion

If you attended the game on Saturday, you probably noticed that the only thing faster than the A’s running onto the field after Stephen Vogt’s walkoff single was the Coliseum’s conversion crew, getting ready to do the big switch. As I hoped, someone captured the entire thing on time-lapse video. Claiming credit is SF media company Evolve Media.

The conversion was announced as complete around 3 PM Sunday, 5+ hours before the rescheduled Chargers-Raiders game. That means it took 18 hours to complete the change, a very impressive figure for sure. For now it looks like the crew has been granted a well-deserved break, as they didn’t tear down the seats immediately after the Raiders won. However, a decision will have to made soon on if/when to switch back to baseball, perhaps as soon as after Game 3 ends. The issue for the Coliseum Authority is that there isn’t a Raiders game at home until October 27, a good three weeks from now. If the A’s don’t advance and the Authority decides not to pull the trigger on the conversion, they could save themselves $500,000. If they wait until the last minute and the field ends up extra crappy because of it, the teams playing Game 5 and MLB will not be pleased. Here’s to hoping the A’s can force the issue.

34 thoughts on “Time lapse Coliseum conversion

  1. I love this video. I’m very happy the JPA finally captured this process. I really hope alternate designs of Mt. Davis are revealed someday. Two things:
    1. I wonder why the JPA opted for the fixed seating bowl compared to the rolling seats of the East Coast cookie cutters. Was it cheaper?
    2. A large portion of Parking Lot A was shut off to fans/cars both Friday and Saturday. I’m guessing this was auxiliary space for the conversion process?

  2. Wow. Dark turns to sunlight in this video. Not only is this the last of the multipurpose NFL-MLB stadium dinosaurs, but the conversion process is very complex – not easily done.

  3. While crossing the BART bridge to the Coliseum on Friday afternoon, my buddy and I were looking over at the stands stacked up beside the parking lot and arguing over how difficult the conversion process really was. He said something about the big cranes, no sweat, etc. I was dubious that it was so simple. The guy walking next to us said, “That’s my job. I’m part of the crew that puts the stands in and takes them out. It usually takes us three days to put them in.”

    He sure sounded like he knew what he was talking about. (He also told us how much overtime he expected to earn over the weekend.)

  4. re: He also told us how much overtime he expected to earn over the weekend.)

    We hear about the stadium conversion costs, mortgage costs, police costs, etc and it’s easy to see why a non-sports fan like Jerry Brown was eager to do nothing to help the teams in Oakland as mayor and as governor afterward.

  5. My favorite thing was watching the A’s tarps on Mt Davis come down, turn seeing the Raider tarps go up…

    in regards to the difference between the coliseum and other multipurpose stadiums is that the press box behind home plate is also on the 50 for football. I always wondered if other stadiums had two press boxes, or which press got the shaft if they didn’t.

  6. A’s have just won so the Coliseum crew can proceed with switching back to the baseball configuration, since there will be at least one more ball game before the Raiders come back home.

  7. Brian, it depended on the stadium. For instance Qualcomm Stadium still has 2 press boxes despite the Padres having been gone a decade now. Candlestick also had 2 press boxes.

  8. @Brian: Interesting point. I never considered that.

    This is a great opportunity to capture the football-to-baseball Coliseum conversion now for either Thursday or the first first potential Oakland ALCS game.

  9. Most multipurpose stadia had separate press boxes. Part of this was the field orientation. Usually the baseball press box was at a corner of the football field, which wasn’t acceptable years ago. It’s actually more acceptable now. The other issue was the size of the press box. Decades ago the writers’ press box may have held only 20-30 people. The box at the ‘Stick was ridiculously small. Now the writers’ box can hold 100-200 people, similar to what a football press box will hold. Broadcasts have also grown in size and become more numerous.

    When the Coliseum renovations were done in 1996, the one thing I marveled at (besides the sheer size of Mt. Davis) was the spaciousness of the press box.

  10. Some day there will be no conversions…Go A’s!!

  11. So, is the auxiliary press section in 315 or whatever just a courtesy to the extra press members on top of having media facilities within the Coliseum in the Raiders clubhouse?

  12. @Briggs – No, the media are set up with different types of access. Most have access to the press box, where they can watch the game and write their stories. The press box usually also has a separate working room, though that’s not necessary these days. Then they also might have access to the locker room, interview rooms, and the field. A credential will specify which areas you’re allowed into. The extra seats in 317 are there to fulfill MLB’s additional postseason requirements. Often those seats are for foreign press. For the A’s it looks like many credentials were given to radio/TV guys who aren’t assigned to work the games.

  13. Since the Coliseum has had the field running in two different directions over the years, does that mean that the the football press box would have been in the end zone during the HP-CF orientation?

  14. Mark out of curiosity what was the last time that the football field was oriented home plate to center field?

  15. @Mark – In 1995, when the Coliseum renovations started, they used the old pre-1982 configuration. The football field ran from home plate to center field for the last weeks of the baseball season. After baseball ended (mercifully early for a mediocre A’s squad), the football field orientation was rotated 90 degrees to the normal setting, and a big bank of seats was placed in front of the baseball bleachers. OFMA and the Raiders often found it tricky guiding season ticket holders through that transition. When the Raiders came back Al Davis made it abundantly clear that he wasn’t going to live with that two-way setup. The rest is history.

  16. The Coli was rocking this weekend! Third deck open! We were there Friday and Saturday and half our gang was back on Sunday! Awesome!

  17. Indeed, the Coliseum was rockin’. I tried checking the decibel reading an iPhone 4S and 5s, and they both maxed out at 99. I got the feeling that their mics weren’t capable of receiving anything louder. I appreciated that the A’s displayed the dB readings on DiamondVision.

    Hopefully them Athletics get that W today and give us all a refund on our Game 5 tickets.

  18. @Briggs – It’s true. I’ll have more on that later this week. Thanks for trying.

  19. Breaking news! The Raiders have agreed to move out of Oakland to a new stadium in 2014!

    For one game next season in London. Still not great for Oakland that the Raiders are being lumped in with the likes of Jacksonville who will also be ‘hosting’ one of the NFL’s 3 London games next year.

  20. So that takes care of one game. Where will they be playing the other 7 plus the two exhibition games?

  21. This is all about the NFL going worldwide, and doing a little strong arm, on places like the ATL, JAC, and the Oakland?, all three are trying to get new or improved parks, we get it.

  22. “We are excited and embrace this great opportunity to assist in building NFL popularity worldwide,” said Raiders Owner Mark Davis. “The Raiders are truly a global brand and we are looking forward to our home-field advantage at the new Wembley Stadium.

  23. Lakeshore, I have to say with the Raiders now taking advantage of the London thing like all the other teams looking for new stadia in STL, ATL, MIN or simply in a terrible position like JAX… I find it odd that the Chargers have somehow remained outside the London mix. Makes me wonder if they really have no interest in leaving or overtly threatening San Diego.

  24. @Xoot,
    You’re an attorney AND a comedian! (i.e. you’re a funny guy) I never once said that FB was a SJ Company, but they’re obviously a Silicon Valley company (i.e. not HQ in SOMA/SF). The conclusion to that fine ESPN piece on FB and Bay Area fandom: BANDWAGONISM LIVES! I think there’s also a million FB members on that Oakland-only page that was thrown around here a few years back. FB…Really? That is all..

  25. Thanks for sharing, Xoot. Interest infographics. However, you’ve been misled. Facebook is not a San Jose company.

  26. Xoot, that map is pretty stark, particularly for the A’s. For the Raiders though when combined with last winter’s data that showed the Raiders were still the team of choice for several SoCal counties, their reduced capacity/corporate situation in Oakland and now the London threat game, one had to wonder why they’re even wasting their time in the Bay Area any longer. They could move to LA next season and be kings fan wise, pick up a lot more corporate $$$ than they get now, and that without even securing a new stadium either downtown, at Chavez Ravine or Industry.

  27. @Dan Good point about San Diego, also your right I did not bring up Minny(vs PIT this year), and they as well are tieing up there new park. Looks like London is the new LA (I will relocate to, if you dont help, or give me a new park)

  28. I think a lot of that FB “popularity” for the G’s vs A’s has to (obviously) do with AT&T Park, the hip SOMA district and (let’s face it) two WS Championships in three years. Can’t tell you how many “friends” have “checked in” at AT&T Park over the past couple of years. Many whom aren’t real sports fans; they just like to be seen. Get the A’s a new yard, continue their winning ways and all will be well in FBLand…(glad I got that off my chest..)

  29. Amazing. After winning two World Series in 3 years and having what some to be the best park in the majors, the Giants have a lot more fans than the A’s. Let’s re-do that again in a couple years if the Giants keep losing and the A’s keep winning.

  30. Apparently, based on Facebook likes, the most popular NFL team in LA is the Raiders. The most popular NFL team in Alameda County is the 49ers.

  31. Pjk, and based on what I see around both areas on any given Sunday that’s pretty accurate. The Raiders are still very popular in LA. And frankly they’re not in Alameda County by and large. The Bay belongs to the Niners.

  32. that data is nowhere near scientific and is 100% self-selecting. Additionally, I “like” both the Raiders and the Chargers teams on fb, just so I get updates on the chargers.

  33. Yee Yee, you’re assuming FB isn’t intelligent enough to be able to determine from your data that you’re not a fan of the Chargers based on your posting patterns, etc… (hint: they are smart enough and then some).

    And of course it’s self selecting, fans select who they’re fans of. And while it’s not “scientific”, as far as determining fan bases it’s probably the most accurate measure to date short of polling everyone in the bay area directly since most people have a Facebook, particularly in the Bay Area.

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