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University of Wisconsin South End Zone Cited in National Engineering Competition

MADISON, WI — raSmith of Brookfield, Wisconsin, has earned a National Recognition Award for exemplary engineering achievement in the American Council of Engineering Companies’ (ACEC) 56th annual Engineering Excellence Awards (EEA) for the structural design of the South End Zone at Camp Randall Stadium at the University of Wisconsin (UW) in Madison.

The newly designed space provides a unique area that maximizes the game-day experience for corporate suite sponsors and Badgers fans, while preserving the character of the stadium and nearby historic UW Field House. Features include a seating area with a capacity of 2,300 fans, access to indoor and outdoor hospitality clubs, climate-controlled amenities, expanded food and beverage offerings, and dedicated restrooms.

The project team tackled the technical challenge of transferring the structural system’s 400,000-pound load, plus the weight of patrons sitting in the South End Zone, without overloading existing column integrity. To establish a connection to the historic UW Field House, a new platform was added that provides views into the building. Expansion joints at both ends of the addition allow for platform movement when temperature changes occur. Completed in nine months, the new South End Zone was ready in time for the start of the Badgers’ 2022 football season.

The project is among 179 EEA entries this year representing engineering excellence from throughout the nation and the world. Judging for the awards program took place in March and was conducted by a national 27-member panel of built environment leaders, along with experts from government, the media, and academia. Award criteria focused on uniqueness and originality, technical innovation, social and economic value, and generating excitement for the engineering profession.

Recognition of all 2023 award winners, including top winners — 16 Honor Awards, eight Grand Awards, and the Grand Conceptor Award for the year’s most outstanding overall engineering achievement — will take place at the annual EEA Gala Dinner and Awards Program, a black-tie event to be held June 13, 2023, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C.

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