Official Superdome Website
When Alabama defeated Penn State in the Sugar Bowl on December 31, 1975, in the Superdome, the game launched a new era for college football in New Orleans, one that has tracked through four decades of legendary games, coaches and athletes, and one that projects well into the foreseeable future.
The iconic building, now known as the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, which celebrated its 40th birthday in 2015, has truly risen above its counterparts. While most of the other “early” domes have been demolished or mothballed, the Superdome remains at the pinnacle, continuing to host the largest sporting events in the nation including Super Bowls, Final Fours and the 2020 College Football Playoff National Championship, as well as the Allstate Sugar Bowl and the New Orleans Saints on an annual basis.
The Superdome stands as one of America’s architectural marvels and has now emerged as Louisiana’s most recognizable landmark. However, in August, 2005, the whole world saw what happened here when Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans. The image of the Superdome with its torn roof, surrounded by flood waters, was a lasting one.
Now that image has transcended into a symbol of the recovery of the city—the rebuilt Superdome with its gleaming white roof and its fabulous night-time glow poised on the threshold of downtown. Those who doubted that it could be done—that the Dome and the city could come back—now see a nine-acre round billboard that has a clear message. The Superdome and New Orleans are back big time.
Following the biggest rebuilding project ever attempted in a major stadium, September 25, 2006, has become a significant date in the history of an historic city. The reopening of the Superdome, with the Saints playing on Monday Night Football, launched a citywide celebration. It was watched by millions on television and provided a lifetime memory for everyone who was present.
They discovered a new Superdome sporting a fresh look with contemporary color schemes, dazzling graphics, state-of-the-art LED video boards and scoreboards, hundreds of flat-screen TVs, bigger and better concession stands, and remodeled suites and reception rooms. During the 2011 off-season, eye-catching lighting capabilities were unveiled making the building an even more vivid highlight of the Big Easy skyline. In the summer of 2016, another very noticeable upgrade was completed as a pair of 333-foot long state-of-the-art high-definition video boards, the longest in any NFL stadium, were installed at each end of the Superdome.
Following the 2019 football season, the venerable Superdome began another series of renovations as the first phase of a $450 million makeover commenced. Beautiful wide-open atriums will eventually replace the current ramp system and improved concourses will accommodate expanded vendor options as well as field-level end zone boxes. Work is expected to continue through the 2024 season, with completion in advance of the city’s next NFL Super Bowl.
While the interior of the ’Dome has seen major updates, one of the more noticeable modifications has been the addition of Champions Square, adjacent to the main structure. A true pedestrian mall, Champions Square features a marquee stage for concerts, including many stand-alone concerts in recent years, and provides an outstanding pregame party area for the major events in the building. A Grand Staircase provides an area for patrons to sit and enjoy food and drinks with a fantastic view of the entertainment on the main stage before funneling them inside the Superdome for the main event.
The Superdome has played a vital role in the city and state for more than 40 years, attracting visitors and national media to the city and keeping New Orleans in the minds of millions. The future of the building remains bright as well, as the upcoming makeover will ensure the facility maintains its status as a premier sporting facility for many years to come.