Daily digest: L.A. Coliseum becomes a racetrack, Milan will build a web of bicycle highways, and more

Round And Round They Go

Daily digest: L.A. Coliseum becomes a racetrack, Milan will build a web of bicycle highways, and more

The Los Angeles Coliseum Peristyle. (Lawrence Anderson)

Good morning and welcome back.

There’s plenty to get through, so let’s dive into what’s happening today:

L.A. Coliseum is being paved to become a NASCAR racetrack

Construction is plowing ahead at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum as NASCAR lays down pavement ahead of the February 6 Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum race, which opens the 2022 season. The $1 million temporary track project (about what it cost to originally build the coliseum when it opened in 1923 according to Jalopnik) began construction in December and the Phoenix-based New Valley Construction is still laying asphalt at the time of writing.

Don’t worry about the future of the historic Southern California stadium, however; the quarter-mile track will be torn up again after opening weekend. Despite the waste, the conversion was reportedly still cheaper than building an entirely new venue. Meanwhile, the 99-year-old venue will host the Summer Olympics again in 2028 for the third time when they return to Los Angeles. To accommodate what will likely be a surge of visitors, the coliseum underwent its most recent overhaul, led by DLR Group, in 2019—you can read more about the monumental preservation and modernization project here.

H/t to the New York Post

Milan will build a network of bicycle highways by 2035

Milan has committed to building 466 miles of new bicycle highways by 2035, linking the region’s disparate bike paths into one continuous network. First approved by the Milan Metropolitan Council on November 29, 2021, the Cambio project aims to make the entire city accessible by bicycle via smart infrastructure equipped with lighting and real-time information displays. The first section, a stretch of Line 6 connecting Segrate to Idroscalo, is expected to finish construction by the end of this summer.

A spidery map of milan showing 2035 bike routes
(Courtesy the Metropolitan City of Milan)

“In the next few years we will invest around 250 million euros [$284 million] to create a capillary network of cycle paths that will integrate with the other existing modes of travel,” said Mobility Councilor Beatrice Uguccioni. “The aim is to bridge the gap we have with respect to the most virtuous European metropolitan areas. This will lead to less emissions and traffic, but also more road safety, as cyclists and motorists will not have to share the same road site. This is a unique project in Italy, because it is the first to be accompanied by an organic strategic document. Our will is to surround the metropolitan city with a capillary network of cycle paths that connect the capital city with the entire metropolitan area, replicating what we have already done with optical fiber. It is therefore a far-reaching project, because it is conceived in an organic way, constituting an ecosystem that will put all 133 municipalities in our territory in closer connection.”

H/t to Dezeen

Lionsgate is putting the finishing touches on a $500 million film studio in Yonkers

As consumers stuck at home (whether willingly or forced due to COVID) clamor for more content to stream, the film and television boom has led to a corresponding surge in new production studios around the world. The latest beneficiary is downtown Yonkers, New York, a Westchester County city just a stone’s throw from the Bronx.

As the New York Times lays out, entertainment conglomerate Lionsgate is putting the finishing touches on its sprawling, $500 million Lionsgate Studios Yonkers campus and already has plans to expand. The 14.5-acre campus will be complete by the end of next year, rising in and around a former Otis elevator factory along the banks of the Hudson River.

Media infrastructure investment fund Great Point Studios, which is handling the project, today also revealed plans to purchase a second site for the campus before the first is even complete—a 19th-century former orphanage building that sits on a Frederick Law Olmsted landscape. Soundstages, offices, talent suites, hair and makeup rooms, and set shops are already taking shape at the first site.

H/t to the New York Times

The Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy will continue virtual tours through 2022

Wright Virtual Visits, a totally virtual exploration of Frank Lloyd Wright’s projects across America that began in 2020, will return for another year. Starting January 20 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern, two of Wright’s projects will be paired up on Facebook for in-depth explorations and rotate on a monthly basis. The first event next week will showcase Fallingwater in Mill Run, Pennsylvania, with the Westcott House in Springfield, Ohio, for an examination of Wright’s fireplace design.

Wright Virtual Visits is a collaborative effort between the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy, the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, the Unity Temple Restoration Foundation, and Graycliff.

Four-thousand-year-old Texan petroglyphs were damaged after visitors carved their names into them

It’s a less-than-perfect crime: the National Park Service is on the hunt for vandals who carved their own names into a rock panel at Big Bend National Park in Texas. Thought to have been carved between 4,000 and 8,500 years ago by Native tribes, the petroglyphs covering the rock have been covered by the perpetrators’ names and the date that they were at the park, December 26, 2021.

Officials are keeping the exact location of the damaged boulder under wraps for now, as someone had already tried to clean it with tap water but only further stained and discolored the rock.

H/t to Artnet News

A teamsters strike is slowing Seattle construction to a halt

Teamsters are continuing to strike in Seattle over a contract that expired on July 31, 2021, and the work stoppage has expanded to cover six concrete companies. With teamsters and the six companies (Gary Merlino, Stoneway Concrete, Cadman, CalPortland/Glacier, Salmon Bay Sand and Gravel, and Lehigh Cement, according to Construction Dive) at a standstill, concrete deliveries to projects across the Puget Sound region have gone unfulfilled. As supplies dwindle and construction sites go dormant, layoffs for masons, laborers, and other related workers are likely in the cards until the dispute is resolved and projects can pick back up again.

H/t to Construction Dive