After nearly 28 years of seeing the white peaks of the Convention Center's iconic Sails Pavilion roof visible from the air, land and bay, San Diegans will have to adjust to a new view as the Sails embark on a six-month replacement project.
The Sails Pavilion will remain almost the same, Barbara Moreno, Executive Director of Communications for the San Diego Convention Center Corporation, said in a statement. However, the weather fly on top will be removed.
"The white sails roof atop our 90,000 square foot Sails Pavilion exhibit space is part of what has made the San Diego Convention Center one of the most recognizable venues, worldwide," said San Diego Convention Center Corporation President and CEO Clifford "Rip" Rippetoe, in a statement.
After nearly three decades of service, the original sails will be taken down one section at a time. The preliminary work will begin in August, with the entire project lasting through January 2018, according to the San Diego Convention Center Corporation.
Also, the fire-life safety system that is part of the Sails Pavilion, which includes fire water cannons, will be upgraded, and new lighting will be installed.
"Thanks to a collaborative effort between our staff, our Board of Directors as well as City and State officials, we secured funding to extend the life of this unique facility asset,” stated Rippetoe.
The sails roof replacement will cost $10.5 million, and the fire-life safety system will cost $1.66 million.
Funding for the project came from the $25.5 million California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank) Loan. There are seven project partners including BirdAir, Baker Electric, Kinsman Construction, Siemens, American Scaffold, Smart Safety and Barnhart-Reese, said Convention Center officials.
There will be 40 people each day working on the project at its peak, plus convention center staff, according to the San Diego Convention Center Corporation.
The first pieces of the fabric roof will be removed around mid-August. Sixty-foot long pieces of the structure will be taken down, one segment at a time. Simultaneously, another contractor will be removing the entire roof's support structure, said Convention Center officials.
The new roof will be raised sometime around Thanksgiving. The construction should be completed in January 2018.