Project Management Institute

To the End Zone

The National Football League's (NFL) Dallas Cowboys franchise has long been called America's team. To provide this team with a new stadium that could showcase their games in a way that matches their larger-than-life reputation, and offers the City of Dallas a flexible venue for hosting a diverse variety of events ranging from rock concerts to rodeos to basketball games to the crown jewel of sports--the NFL's Super Bowl, which the stadium housed in February 2011, the stadium's owners worked closely with the builders to create a structure that offers first-class amenities and flexible functionality. This article discusses the eight-year process to construct the new US$1 billion Dallas Cowboys Stadium (Arlington, TX, USA). In doing so, it overviews the project's scope, which involved work performed by more that 100 subcontractors and 2,200 personnel, using materials from vendors in 10 US states and 12 countries to realize a building design that revised 300 times. It describes how the team managed the project via weekly meetings to ensure that the project would meet the expectations and requirements of its stakeholders--team owners, players, and fans. It looks at the challenges the project team faced in creating the building's hallmark design elements: the world's largest video board and the world's largest free-standing roof, a portion of which is retractable. It explains the challenges the project team faced--and the advantages it gained--from working directly with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. It then explains how the project manager coordinated the final six months of work on a project that had a definite completion date, noting how the project team performed the activities they needed to do to complete the project while continuing to follow the project manager's fundamental project management practices.
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