DowAksa USA (Marietta, GA, US) reports that its has signed an agreement with the Chicago Cubs baseball team to help restore and preserve Wrigley Field, using DowAksa CarbonWrap, a carbon fiber-reinforced polymer system. The system, which has a strength-to-weight ratio more than 50 times greater than steel, is being used to strengthen and extend the life of the structure, while helping to retain its historic charm.
The Chicago Cubs' 1060 Project is designed to ensure the viability of the ballpark for future generations of Cubs fans, while preserving the beauty, charm and historic features fans have come to know and love. The multi-year plan – which includes structural updates, improved player facilities, new signage, expanded concessions, new and improved restroom facilities, and much more – launched in 2014 and will be completed in separate phases each offseason.
Unlike typical concrete repair technologies, which often require major chipping and replacing or demolition, the DowAksa CarbonWrap system is applied in a manner similar to hanging wallpaper. After patching and smoothing the degraded concrete substrate, a thin fabric of woven carbon fibers is applied to it and saturated with a resin matrix. Once cured, the resulting composite adds significant strength to the structure while only adding about an eighth of an inch in thickness. Finally, a protective top coat is applied to accommodate the heavy traffic areas. When painted, DowAksa says, it looks as good as new – but it is actually stronger than new. This ease of application not only saves significant money over traditional repair alternatives, but also helps to accelerate repair efforts
“The 1060 Project is a historic undertaking to preserve and restore Wrigley Field, and it is critical for our project team to complete the job with the safest and highest quality materials possible. DowAksa CarbonWrap will allow us to save time and limit costs, while improving the quality of the restoration,” says Carl Rice, vice president of the Wrigley Field restoration and expansion.
“This engineered solution has been proven in the field for more than two decades, including restoration of other historic structures,” says Eric Coleman, U.S. general manager of DowAksa. “We are pleased to partner with the Chicago Cubs to not only help restore this American icon, but to also strengthen it for future generations of fans.”