When it comes to the stadium experience, fans want to be blown away. Whether you’re going for the game, a concert or simply checking out the home of your favorite team, there are so many details that go into making an arena stand out from the rest. In light of AT&T Stadium’s recent tenth anniversary, we take a look at ten things you probably didn’t know about Dallas’ beloved home of the Cowboys. This beast of a stadium has been home to more than just football games over the past decade; from monster trucks and all-you-can-eat ice-cream socials to concerts and even a few weddings! Check out these secrets about AT&T Stadium below…
It’s the largest LED video board in the NFL
When it comes to the technological advancements of modern stadiums, AT&T Stadium is top of the game. The massive video board that spans over 25,000 square-feet of space is the largest in the NFL, and is six times larger than the screen in New York’s MetLife Stadium. This giant screen is also connected to more than 800 feet of ribbon boards that loop around the stadium, making it the most technologically advanced stadium in the world.
Only Stadium With A Collaborative Food Court
When the American Airlines Center opened in September 2001, the old Cowboys Stadium was still under construction, and AT&T Stadium was yet to be imagined. As such, the American Airlines Center is the only stadium in Texas to host a food court, which is made up of restaurants from the likes of Chili’s, Cantina Laredo and Chuy’s. If you want to get your usual stadium fare, don’t worry, there’s a selection of local favorites like Torchy’s and Popeye’s too. Of course, the best part is the fact that each restaurant has a line that is completely separate from the other, meaning that the most congested part of the stadium is the line for the beer and hotdog stands!
Its Roof Has A Coaching Room & Theatre
The stunning retractable roof of AT&T Stadium is one of the stadium’s most iconic features, so it’s only appropriate that its roof also holds one of the stadium’s best kept secrets. The roof houses a whopping 16,000 square-foot room called the Coach’s Club, which is made up of 12 separate meeting rooms, a catering kitchen, media centre and even a theatre. This is where teams meet, strategize and even host press conferences; it’s also where the roof’s closing and opening is controlled! You can even see the Coach’s Club from the field; it’s located above the south endzone, just beside the giant video board!
History of the Stadium
Before the building was constructed, the only information that the general public knew about the future home of the Dallas Cowboys was that it would have a retractable roof. After years of rumours, the stadium was finally announced in October 2007 by Arlington city officials as a joint project between the Cowboys organization and the city of Arlington, with a projected cost of $1.2 billion. The stadium was built on the site of the old Arlington Stadium, which was demolished in February 2008. During the construction, workers had to deal with extremely hot temperatures, making the record-breaking heat wave of 2011 all the more impressive. When the stadium was completed in May 2009, it became the world’s largest sports stadium built exclusively for a National Football League team.
It Has A Double-Decker Press Box…
While the field is full of fascinating facts, what’s above the field gets an even bigger wow factor. The press box at AT&T Stadium is the largest in the United States and the second largest in the world! It’s a whopping 8,500 square feet and has a double-decker design, with the upper deck stretching 8 feet above the lower deck. The upper deck is home to the executive box, which is reserved for corporate guests, the media and even some special guests such as the President of the United States. It’s also the spot where the owner’s box is located, which is the place where Jerry Jones watches the game from! Down in the lower deck, there are over 120 seats available for the media to use, including a cool little feature for the broadcasters: a window that is designed to look like a TV screen!
How to get to the Stadium
As you can imagine, it’s pretty tricky to get to a stadium that hosts two million visitors a year. However, there are a few methods to make your journey as simple as possible. If you’re driving to the stadium, it’s recommended that you arrive three hours before kickoff, as the stadium will be heaving with fans trying to get in. If you’re taking public transport, there is a nearby light rail station a few minutes away from the stadium, but this is only open on game days. If you’re taking a taxi, make sure you’re careful: AT&T Stadium is infamous for scammers.