The City of Sacramento and partners have embarked on the renovation and expansion of the Sacramento Convention Center, the Memorial Auditorium, and the Community Center Theater, known as the C3 Project. So that means. Demolition time! And a great opportunity to document this process in a unique setting that presents some challenges. The filming was once per week, for 10 weeks.

The first day I arrived on-site, I was somewhat surprised at the actual scope of the project. Huge concrete walls crumbled into large pieces of very solid slabs. Immense heavy equipment and many workers on-site. With all the heavy equipment and vehicles moving around, its definitely a “keep your head on a swivel” type of shoot. With cell phones, routers and many electronic frequencies permeating through the area, I knew it would be crucial to take certain steps to reduce flight interferences, such as: Calibrating the compass perfectly. Stay away from any metal. Put my cell phone in airplane mode. Confirm a low KP-index and to NOT fly in GPS mode when possible (ATTI instead). I would also have to remove auto channel surfing due to all the interference and lock in a specific channel for my transmitter to communicate with my drone.

All set and good to go! At first takeoff, it was odd to lift off to 250′ elevation and see that I am still being overlooked by a highrise building. Surreal actually! The perspective of the complex really comes to life when elevated. I could see the progress of the demo as well as the eventual layout of the renovation. Planning to be finished in late 2020, the complex will boast several new additions including two new exhibit halls that will be built on the West increasing exhibit space from 137,000 to 160,000 SF. In addition, a new East lobby and meeting room space on the East side will be constructed. On the West side, a new lobby, kitchen, café, 40,000 SF ballroom and meeting rooms will be built.

While flying, It was crucial that I get close to the equipment and structures to showcase the immensity of the project while maintaining enough of a distance to stay clear of water, dirt, rocks and other debri flying around. Tricky stuff! Particularly when filming cinematic video, when smooth movements and concise flying is important. But so much fun to get these shots! Click below to view the video showcasing the demolition progress from week 1 to week 5. Turn up volume! Music is crucial in video! Take a look and feel free to reach out to AntiGravity Aerial Productions with any questions. Or come see me at Action Camera on Mondays, Thursday and Saturdays! – Corey Hill

Sacramento Convention Center Demolition