On Friday morning, the final piece of steel was erected for the new stadium of the San Jose Earthquakes.
Scheduled to be ready for the opening of the 2015 season, the steel frame is now complete, and al that is left is the dressing - the grass, the seats, the scoreboard and of course the outdoor bar, etc.
The ceremony begun at 11 a.m., followed by a community BBQ, held to thank the fans for their support and there was certainly a sense of excitement and pride.
"It's a truly historic day, not only for the San Jose Earthquakes and soccer, but for the Santa Clara valley and this community. To have a venue like this, what it means for quality of life and to have something to share like this, it's just a truly great day," said club president Dave Kaval.
According to Kaval, the stadium is expected to be completed by November, but no events are scheduled to take place until the start of the new season next year. However, Kaval says that the idea is to have the ability to host various events, outside of Quakes soccer match.
"Whether it's a Vietnamese festival, or an international soccer match, or a World Cup viewing, or a rugby match, all at this venue, and to really create this venue as a real village green for the city of San Jose. When you think of San Jose, there is no "there, there" and I think this venue could be "it."
The idea of having a true destination to go to is without question exciting, as SF Giants fans can attest to with AT&T Park. With restaurants, bars and shops nearby, the area near AT&T Park is a place you can hang around at either on a game day or any other day, which is something the Earthquakes hope to duplicate with the new stadium.
The project of completing the steel frame was also completed without injuries or death, which was highlighted with the adding of a small Christmas tree atop the final steel piece.
"For a lot of people in San Jose, many people thought this day would never come," added Kaval. The team had left multiple times, it has had a tortured history, it has been challenging and we have been fighting against a lot of head winds to get to this day and despite all those odds, we found a way."
"We're in stoppage time, right now, we just scored a goal!"