Charlotte city leaders discuss hosting Super Bowl with NFL commish

Charlotte city leaders discuss hosting Super Bowl with NFL commish

Print
Email
|

by DIANNE GALLAGHER / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @DianneG

WCNC.com

Posted on October 25, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Updated Friday, Oct 26 at 12:08 AM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The first step has been taken, but it will be quite some time before Charlotte will compete to host a Super Bowl.

City leaders and business representatives spent three days visiting New York, capping-off the trip Thursday morning by speaking with the Commissioner of the National Football League, Roger Goodell.

"There was a question on if they would consider us, and the answer was 'Yes, we would,'" said City Councilman John Autry when asked about Charlotte's Super Bowl chances.

Not without some major changes though.

Goodell told the delegation Charlotte would need more hotel rooms and a more modern stadium.

Bob Morgan, the President of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, said Goodell gave 'suggestions.'

"Bank of America Stadium -- as good as it is -- is 20 years old. The question of upgrading it is very relevant to the question of our competitiveness of a Super Bowl going forward," said Morgan.

The delegation toured MetLife Stadium in the Meadowlands -- home to the New York Giants, Jets and 2014 Super Bowl -- to get an idea of what features a more modern stadium has.

"Large, high definition televisions and video boards. A common part of the stadium infrastructure now is to have escalators to get fans up into the stadium. And you have to find a way to strengthen, better the Wi-Fi connectivity for fans," said Morgan.

Morgan also said Goodell was a straight shooter about how to finance those kinds of upgrades.

He said Goodell told the group, "It doesn't happen without public and private partnership. The team benefits. The public benefits."

Early estimates, while unofficial, put the upgrade costs at more than $200 million. Real numbers aren't expected until after the first of the year. Mayor Anthony Foxx reportedly sent Panthers owner Jerry Richardson a letter in September inviting him to discuss ways to fund the stadium renovations, however, no public money has been committed to any project just yet.

Charlotte will also need to add thousands of hotel rooms to the roughly 30,000 currently available in the immediate area.

Print
Email
|