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Nearly two years after the state Legislature cleared the way for construction of a stadium for the Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club, pile-driving finally has replaced politics at center stage of the project.
With grading and excavation complete, the fan-shaped footprint of Miller Park has taken over the landscape in the centerfield parking lot of Milwaukee County Stadium, just beyond Bernie Brewer's beer-barrel abode.
By early August, the building's foundation will be in place. About 1,400 piles, measuring more than 25 miles in all, plus 285 steel piers will support what project participants claim will be the heaviest building in the state - nearly 75,000 tons according to current best estimates.
By September, the first above-ground glimpse of the building's skeleton will appear, as construction teams build the service-level, or basement, wails of the stadium.
"We're finally able to concentrate on building Miller Park," said Mike Duckett, executive director of the Southeast Wisconsin Professional Baseball Park District. "This is the fun part."
But that doesn't mean the project's turned into a picnic. Constructing Miller Park is an enormously complex undertaking, as its $300-million-plus price tag suggests. Supporting infrastructure - principally roads, bridges, parking lots and utilities - …