Weidner Field Draws Visitors to Colorado Springs
Weidner Field is home to Switchbacks Football Club in Colorado Springs and part of an initiative known as City for Champions (C4C), a long-term initiative to develop and deliver new life to the area. The field contains some of the most robust broadcast infrastructure in the United Soccer League (USL), the second division of soccer in America, which is one step below Major League Soccer (MLS). A project of this magnitude brings with it a national audience and becomes a community flagship, promoting growth of the surrounding area by drawing visitors back to a once-forgotten neighborhood.
This stadium adds to the C4C initiative of must-see attractions in the area, including the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum, this outdoor stadium, an indoor arena, and the U.S. Olympic Training Center. All of these together are establishing downtown Colorado Springs as a destination for sporting events.
Thoughtful rejuvenation brings life to downtown Colorado Springs by creating new jobs, and by attracting restaurants, stores, and hotels. Soon apartments and mixed-use spaces will be added as the city strives toward its primary goal to increase downtown density, create an iconic skyline, and establish a high-quality pedestrian environment.
The renewed sports destination offers an array of technical marvels to accommodate a wide variety of events. The stadium sits at 6,035 feet above sea level, making it one of the highest elevation stadiums of any team in the American sports and can seat up to 15,000 spectators. Featuring 145,500-square-feet, it contains a dozen broadcast connection locations and close to 2,000 various cable connections, which means it is fully equipped for almost any broadcast need. Encore Electric is proud to have provided power, energy, lighting, and technology solutions for this world-class facility, which includes a three-story building attached to the field with a restaurant and other training facilities.
At the project’s peak, there were 15 electricians working on the construction side of the project, who worked alongside other Encore Electric Technology Solutions technicians and professionals. These teams worked together as “One Encore” to ensure that the needs of the Colorado Springs Switchbacks, the city of Colorado Springs and other stakeholders were fully met.
One construction-side solution that was extremely valuable is the lighting that illuminates the field. All of the fixtures are LED, and allow traveling tours, music artists and other users to control the lights and even sync them to on-field action or music.
The area is a high-profile cornerstone of the city’s development plan and a labor of love for those closest to it. Driven by the project’s general contractor GE Johnson, and every specialty contractor, the team was invested in helping to bring something special to the community.
“It was pretty special cleaning up a rundown area of downtown,” said David Zerr, Superintendent for GE Johnson. “Seeing it’s completion and knowing fans of soccer, concerts, and other events enjoy it, really demonstrates a job well done.”
Like many other projects, this one lasted 14-months during the peak of Covid – all things considered, it went really well, everyone joined forces all the way through,” Zerr continued. “It had its challenges, some days we had all the craftspeople we needed and other days we were short-staffed. Considering those challenges, we did a great job working together to get to opening day.
Overcoming challenges like this develops relationships with like-minded partners. Encore Electric appreciates like-minded value partners like Clark Wire, a leader in broadcast infrastructure. The Clark Wire team stepped up and aligned project goals with Encore Electric, helping to provide a total solution from the cabling and broadcast enclosures to the fully loaded connector panels including laser engraved labels.
We are heavily involved in the sporting world for stadiums and arenas and Weidner Field is without a doubt was an amazing destination put together with professionalism across the board. A first-rate design indeed”, said John Orona, with Clark Wire.
The Clark Wire team made the critical broadcast cable element of this project easy for us, establishing them as a big contributor to the overall success of the project,” said Encore Electric Solution Architect Kevin Zolitor. They worked with us every step of the way, starting with solid pricing support, offering design alternatives to save cost, and technical support during engineering.
Zolitor further emphasized the importance of the Encore Electric and Clark Wire relationship, which contributed to delivering exactly what the customer expected. “Their product delivery simplified the job and saved time. The panels are solid and look great, with no quality issues and the Switchbacks Football Club broadcast team loves the system.”
Clark Wire made our job so much easier throughout the project by providing careful attention to detail. Cabling for every broadcast location was cut to length and palletized for easy material transport across the site which simplified installation,” said Encore Electric Technology Solutions Project Manager Dylan Steffenauer. “In addition, all the enclosures and panels came with an elevation drawing for the technicians to use when installing, speeding up the process. We received exceptional support from the Clark Wire team, allowing us to deliver a quality product to our customer as a result.
The Clark Wire team shared their collective voice on this project as well.
“It was such a wonderful experience working on the Weidner Field project with the Encore Electric Technology Solutions team.,” they said. “Their team could not have been any better to work with and their understanding of products and expertise in their respective field makes our job so much easier.”
During the course of a project, life cycle must remain top of mind. It’s important to make good decisions about material quality, product selection, and installation. Finding a partner who cares about the customer with the skillset to simplify processes to help move the schedule forward is priceless.
Being part of reawakening the heart of the downtown Colorado Springs area gives all partners associated with this project a deep sense of pride. Families for generations to come will enjoy this amazing destination within the community.