Super Bowl organizers begin daily briefings


The Super Bowl is 13 days away, but many of the Super Bowl events start this Friday.

While most of us took the weekend off, Indianapolis worked over time on its super transformation. Downtown's new look is changing every day.

Capitol Ave. is a construction zone. There's artificial turf carpeting the pavement, giving the Super Bowl Village the look and feel of a football field.

Eighty feet up, workers were preparing to string the block-long zip line. St. John's Church parking lot is turning into a television broadcast center. On Georgia Street, temporary "Fire and Ice" cafés line the walkways and the first of two concert stages is up.

The Super Bowl Host Committee began the first of its scheduled daily morning briefings Monday. The organizers will hold the meetings every day until the big game Feb. 5.

One of the organizers modeled the Super Bowl "volunteer uniform," which includes a scarf and hat. The host committee has already distributed 4,000 uniforms and credentials to volunteers. Organizers say they plan to add 4,000 more in the next few days. 

"We have folks on the street pretty much day and night right now," said Susan Baughman, a senior vice president of the Indianapolis Super Bowl Host Committee.

Committee members are confident workers will finish by Friday when the Super Bowl Village opens. Bauman explained, "The weather has been good and a little colder so they've been able to work through every condition we've had so far. We are really pleased with their progress."

However, contractors are fighting weather that at times is brutal. Workers hanging a Super Bowl banner from the Pan Am Building gave up Monday after a wind gust took them for a scary ride.

"About 20 feet off the building," Donald Baum said. "The zip line is nothing compared to what we just did."

But the 45-mph winds are a test for a lot of the tents going up around the village. They are made of heavy fabric, stretched over steel frames. The frames are anchored to the street with bolts and large cylinders of concrete.

The expanding construction, as downtown workers are discovering, is closing more streets, narrowing others and creating more traffic.

"It's impossible to get around," complained one driver waiting waiting at a stop line.

"Difficult" is perhaps more accurate. "Impossible" is for Super Bowl Sunday, now just 13 days away.

Additional street closures went into effect Monday. Lane restrictions begin on Meridian Street south of Georgia Street. See all restrictions here.

On the east end of Super Bowl Village, the Banker's Life Vortex Zone is going up. It's a huge tent that will host gaming and other activities.

Tours start Monday for people wanting to go inside Lucas Oil Stadium to get an idea of what the stadium will look like during the Super Bowl. Right now there are only 254 temporary seats being installed inside the stadium for fans. Exact seating for the game is not known at this time. The NFL will determine that number after they finish building other press boxes and facilities.

The NFL's social media command center opens next week. That will act as the online mobile hub of information for fans looking for everything from parking spaces to details about Super Bowl activities. Also, the NFL Super Bowl XLVI app will debut later Monday.

Super Bowl 2012 - See stories, events, schedules, parking/road closures and more.