Mayor Pushing For New Stadium For Atlanta Falcons

Mayor Pushing For New Stadium For Atlanta Falcons

March 15, 2012

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said today that by building a new Atlanta Falcons stadium the city would likely be awarded the opportunity to host a Super Bowl.

The mayor spoke about a new Falcons stadium at the tail end of an interview about voter approval for a renewal of an essential sewer sales tax.

Reed says there’s still much negotiation to be done – and that he’s not likely to be deeply involved in those talks: “The other parties can go on and work on their part of the equation. I’m only speaking for me, and what I have responsibility for, and that is the city’s contribution through our hotel/motel sales tax. [We] are going to completely support [owner] Arthur Blank and the Atlanta Falcons.”

The Falcons already have been working on this project for a couple of years. They’ve indicated they would like the stadium to be built near the Georgia Dome.

That would be totally logical because Philips Arena and several major tourist attractions are located in that vicinity. And building a new stadium likely would bring a temporary, but very large, tourist attraction to Atlanta.

”I believe we will be awarded a Super Bowl, and I think we have the best owner (Arthur Blank) in America,’’ Reed said.

That’s all encouraging. Atlanta last hosted a Super Bowl in 2000. That week turned into a logistical nightmare when an ice storm hit the city in the days leading up to the Super Bowl and caused many problems with the surrounding events. The game itself went off without any major problems, but it was played in an indoor facility.

Would the NFL put a Super Bowl in an outdoor stadium in Atlanta after that icy experience? Well, recent history has shown a willingness to reward cities for getting stadiums built.

The Dallas area hosted a Super Bowl that was preceded by terrible weather. This year’s Super Bowl was played in Indianapolis, which will never be confused with the tropics in February. But the Cowboys and Colts both have indoor stadiums. The NFL has shown that may not matter, though. The 2014 Super Bowl will be in the New York/New Jersey area at Giants Stadium, which doesn’t have a roof on it.

All that should work in Atlanta’s favor if a new stadium is built.

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