New stadium talk is heating up again around Atlanta.
Fox5 reported earlier this week the Falcons are evaluating sites around Metro Atlanta for a new stadium, which could be ready when the team’s lease expires with the 17-year-old Georgia Dome.
Falcons President Rich McKay said it takes up to seven years to plan and build a new venue, so now marks the beginning of the evaluation process.
The team’s lease with the Dome expires when the bonds used to fund the stadium are paid off. That could be as early as 2015, but most estimates put the date in 2016. With 25 new or drastically refurbished NFL stadiums opening since the Georgia Dome’s completion, McKay said the team is looking to keep improving the fan experience.
Team Owner and CEO Arthur Blank and the Georgia World Congress Authority, which operates the Dome, embarked on a renovation project before the 2007 season. To date, the team has helped create new-look concourses, a re-designed club and suite level and new red and black seats. This year, the team will unveil new, high-definition video boards.
McKay said the Falcons will keep working with the Dome to provide the best services for fans up until a move is made, hence the renovations.
He wouldn’t talk in detail about some of the locations being considered, but noted talks with the World Congress Authority continue and a new, downtown stadium is not out of the question.
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