The Super Dome to under go facelift

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – New Orleans’ iconic Superdome, home to the Saints football team and a symbol of the city’s revival after Hurricane Katrina, will undergo a $450 million facelift, under a financing plan approved Thursday that is aimed at keeping the NFL team in Louisiana for decades.

The 44-year-old domed stadium, which has hosted seven Super Bowls, will see its ramp system removed and replaced with elevators and escalators, club and suite levels expanded, new entry gates erected, concession stands added and access for people with disabilities improved

The Saints are more important to New Orleans than most pro teams are to their cities. It’s not too much of a stretch to say the most important single event in the post-Katrina recovery of New Orleans was when Steve Gleason blocked that punt against Atlanta, which is why the statue of that block outside the stadium is called “Rebirth”. So they’re not going to take a risk that the team ever leaves one of the smallest NFL markets.

well Jeff that was well said and you can go visit … n-board.2/ and follow the faithful. 450 mil is a bond that will need some outside investors if the oil patch goes bad again as recent trend suggests. I am as mixed as it gets for rooting interests: Saints (forsook the Cowboys in 82 but still love Staubach, Lightning in hockey (actually my current pro fave of all) and Cardinals in baseball then obviously the Hogs even though I have been Vandy employed for 25 years. Cannot stomach NBA regular season or playoffs until finals and then will hope for Steph to be a star again.

Saints fans are the most intense and dedicated of all. Someone mentioned the iconic associations with cities like the Golden Gate in S.F., the arch in StL, Sydney opera house or Big Ben you know the city. That is now true of the Super Dome and New Orleans. Money well invested and not all laid on the taxpayers.

Jerry’s stadium up the road and the new Atlanta stadium have raised the bar significantly above what the Superdome was and is right now. If they don’t fix it, some other city will pony up the tax dollars and take the Saints away from New Orleans and its 40 year old “behind the times” stadium.

I was in the Superdome when we played Ohio St in the Sugar Bowl. Sat on the lower level beneath the cantilevered deck above–probably about row 25-30. The seats were awful. I could see straight in front of me (despite being several rows back, I was not very high above the playing field), but had a terrible view of a thrown or kicked ball when it got very much height. I’m not claustrophobic, but I had a bad sense of being cramped & enclosed.

That Sugar Bowl was 5 years after Katrina & given the damage it took during it, I would have it would have felt more upgraded. I can understand their desire to do a major renovation. I do not know why Atlanta felt it had to replace the Georgia Dome, but I understand this project.

I don’t think this renovation will do anything to fix the issue you had, Chip. Overhangs are a necessary evil in that situation to keep the seats as close to the field as they are. Remember that the Superdome was designed for baseball as well and the Nawlins minor league team played there for a year or two, plus a couple of college tournaments. And like all baseball/football combination stadiums (old Busch and the Astrodome being two others), football suffers because of the additional room baseball needs. This is the baseball configuration.


I understand that the post-Katrina renovations removed the option of the baseball configuration as seen here, though.

We lived in New Orleans in 1983 (actually the West Bank). The Yankee’s played Toronto in the Superdome March 27, 1983 in an exhibition game. I was one of the 15,000 in attendance. Having grown up as a Yankee fan it was a dream come true. Billy Martin managed the Yankee’s at that time. After the game I lost my car in the parking garage. Having just moved from Pine Bluff I had never seen a parking garage so big. The Yankee’s played exhibition games there 4 years in a row in the 80’s.