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Transformed Superdome Open For Business
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
The completely renovated and upgraded Louisiana Superdome has been officially rededicated and is open for business. An $85 million capital outlay project has completely modernized the Superdome. Enhancements on this phase of the project began in late January 2011 and wrapped up during the summer of 2011.
Completing the Superdome renovations has been a multi-phase project that cost a total of $336 million, of which $156 million came from FEMA in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Since the Superdome reopened in 2006, the events held have had a total fiscal impact of $4.1 billion on the Louisiana economy, according to a study by the University of New Orleans' Division of Business Economic Research.
In an interview with the Times-Picayune, Dough Thornton, the senior vice president of SMG, the company that manages the Dome, said, "I have to pinch myself when I walk through here. It's hard to imagine that we are in a building that was so heavily damaged and was really left for dead. There were so many people that didn't think it would recover, and here we are; the Superdome has really been reinvented ... We've seen it come, literally, full circle, from being at its lowest in the history of its 36 years to now what I think will be the golden age of the Superdome.
"I think it's near the top [of top stadiums in the country]. I won't say that it is the best, but it certainly has to rank in the top 12 if not higher. That's saying a lot when you think about all the stadiums that have been built in the last eight or nine years. I go around the league and see a lot of other venues, and this has to be in the top 12."
These extensive upgrades to the Superdome ensure the facility is poised to remain a viable home to the New Orleans Saints, as well as the Allstate Sugar Bowl, the Allstate BCS National Championship, and several other annual events for many years to come.
Most recent significant enhancements include:
New Private Luxury Suites
New Press Box
New Team Store
New Saints Locker Room
New Sideline Seating
Expanded Plaza Level Concourse
New Premium Bunker Club Lounges
Champions Square Phase II construction has also been completed. The Square has been transformed into a true pedestrian mall with the addition of brick pavers in the Square and on LaSalle Street, trees, benches and natural green vine walls. The finishing touch is a permanent grand staircase complete with brick pavers leading to Gate C of the Superdome! For a brief overview and renderings, please click here.