The new $1 billion Cowboys stadium, reportedly the largest and most expensive in the NFL, is quite massive and as most in attendance noted, impressive. The general consensus was that the Cowboys’ new digs look more like a country club than a ball stadium.
While some areas had yet to be completed crews hustled for eight days prior to the event to ensure the main sections were ready for public use for the inaugural event, the George Strait-Reba McIntire concert which also featured Blake Shelton and Lee Ann Womack.
The box suites and lounges were quite posh, with marble tiled restrooms and bars with “football” light cutouts on the ceiling, that is oval indents with crossed lights in the center to give the impression of the ball lacing. And of course, the white leather seats were quite comfy.
The new stadium was billed as having twice the square footage of Texas Stadium and being nearly 30 times more costly. Some sources said early on that the large video screens alone cost more than Texas Stadium did to construct 35 years ago.
The facility also boasted a 80,000 normal seating capacity, although they were only expecting about 60,000-70,000 Saturday, tour guides noted. The venue is also expected to very soon include retractable seating for an additional 20,000, which would put seating capacity at special events such as a Super Bowl at 100,000.
There are also areas on the upper concourses that during especially large popular events could be used as “standing room only areas” with small bars installed in corners. The 210,000 square feet of plaza can also be used for temporary seating. Folding seats are also available to put on the field for “floor seating” for concerts and such events.
We weren’t granted an all access to scope out the entire facility — the box suites and gold level were off limits no matter whether they were finished or occupied. However, a glimpse inside a few open doors as we passed the private suites on the silver concourse showed those lucky enough to afford them definitely have it made. From the carpeting and buffet to the interior, they’re very nice! Of course, there are special entrances and elevators for those who sit in the private suites.
The boards at concessions were all electronic, making prices and offerings easier to change for each event.
Parking was at a minimum and generally cost at least $40 per vehicle, with near-by lots such as at The Ballpark and Six Flags utilized.
Elevators were small but nice, if a bit slow for the gathered crowd, considering stair access to lower seating levels was limited Saturday.
The skylight was opened toward the end of the concert, offering a nice breeze for those in attendance. The facility got a bit warm despite the indoor air. Those in the upper concourses should also have been afford a good view of the full moon through the skylight, which in my opinion was nice, but not as large as I’d have liked.
Overall, the stadium was impressive, more corporate looking than a typical sports stadium. The staff was also all very friendly, if a bit unprepared — many of them had them had their first real look at the stadium Saturday, too.
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