Venue News: Super Bowl Seating Capacity Still Expanding

Even with less than a week until kickoff, the NFL can’t say yet how many will get to see the Super Bowl in person — and how many seats won’t have a view of the stadium’s signature video board. A nearly round-the-clock scramble continues in Arlington, TX, to expand the world’s largest indoor stadium. About 2,000 workers take to Cowboys Stadium each day in their version of a high-stakes two-minute drill to add about 15,000 seats. “Capacity will be over 100,000,” said Bill McConnell, NFL director of event operations, during a media briefing Thursday on the Cowboys Stadium sidelines. “Exactly how many will be here, we won’t know until game day”…

…Backers of a plan to build a football stadium in downtown Los Angeles are set to announce Tuesday that they have reached a naming-rights deal worth $700 million, which would be the most valuable such agreement ever and a significant step toward bringing an NFL team to Los Angeles. AEG, the huge entertainment company that, among other holdings, owns Staples Center and the L.A. Live complex, plans to announce a 30-year agreement with Farmers Insurance. The deal would provide AEG’s proposed project a crucial chunk of contractually obligated income, starting at $20 million for the first year and escalating incrementally every year after, according to individuals familiar with the negotiations but not involved in them. The stadium would be named Farmers Field…

…The New York Mets will host the Major League Baseball All-Star Game at Citi Field in 2013, Sports Illustrated reported on its Website, citing unidentified people with knowledge of the situation. The team hasn’t staged the game since 1964, the longest drought of any franchise, the report said. MLB spokesman Pat Courtney said in a telephone interview that no decision has been made on the 2013 venue…

…A proposal to build a new Minnesota Vikings stadium on the site of a former Army ammunition plant in Arden Hills is being discussed, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported this week. Two Ramsey County commissioners, who are touting the site, met Thursday with Ted Mondale, the new chairman of the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, which is tasked with exploring stadium options. Mondale was appointed to the role by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton. Vikings VP Lester Bagley tells the St. Paul Pioneer Press the Arden Hills site is “a very viable site…”

…Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman is hoping UNLV officials will be successful at bringing a new domed football stadium to campus. But, at the same time, he says he will continue to push for a professional sports arena to be built in downtown Las Vegas at Symphony Park. “I don’t know whether they’re inconsistent with one another,” the mayor says. “I haven’t heard anything in that discussion about bringing an NBA team or an NHL team out to that arena. It appears to be more directed towards the university”…

…The Cincinnati Bengals want Hamilton County, OH, to pour $43.6 million into Paul Brown Stadium repairs and improvements over the next decade, four times the amount the county expected to spend. The plan, obtained under a public-records request, doesn’t specify the improvements, listing them only in broad categories like “groundskeeping,” “audio/visual,” or “concession.” But it does include the county’s buying an $8 million, state-of-the-art scoreboard sometime in the next two years, the Bengals said…

…The University of Nebraska’s Devaney Center will become a more intimate venue for volleyball and other sports when the basketball programs move out, after action by the University Board of Regents this week. The Regents voted unanimously and without public discussion on the details of a $20 million plan to remodel the Devaney Center and to also expand Memorial Stadium. They also approved the issuance of $28.5 million in revenue bonds to help finance the projects.