MetLife Stadium

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MetLife Stadium
The New Meadowlands
MetLife Stadium Logo.png
New Meadowlands Stadium Mezz Corner.jpg
Former names New Meadowlands Stadium (2010-2011)
Location 1 MetLife Stadium Drive,[1]
East Rutherford, New Jersey 07073
United States
Coordinates 40°48′49″N 74°4′28″W / 40.81361°N 74.07444°W / 40.81361; -74.07444Coordinates: 40°48′49″N 74°4′28″W / 40.81361°N 74.07444°W / 40.81361; -74.07444
Public transit Meadowlands Station:
Owner New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority
Operator MetLife Stadium Company, LLC
(New York Giants 50%/New York Jets 50%)
Capacity 82,566
Surface UBU Sports' Speed Series S5-M (2013-present)
FieldTurf (2010-2012)
Construction
Broke ground September 5, 2007[2]
Opened April 10, 2010[6]
Construction cost $1.6 billion
($1.73 billion in 2015 dollars[3])
Architect 360 Architecture
EwingCole
Rockwell Group
Bruce Mau Design, Inc.
Project manager Hammes Company Sports Development
Structural engineer Thornton Tomasetti
General contractor Skanska AB[4]
Main contractors Structal–Heavy Steel Construction, a division of Canam Group[5]
Tenants
New York Giants (NFL) (2010–present)
New York Jets (NFL) (2010–present)
Super Bowl XLVIII (NFL) (2014)
Wrestlemania 29 (2013)

MetLife Stadium is a sports stadium located at in the Meadowlands at the MetLife Sports Complex in East Rutherford, New Jersey, United States. It is the home of the New York Giants and New York Jets of the National Football League and is adjacent to the site of the former Giants Stadium, which was home to the Giants from 1976 until December 2009 and the Jets from 1984 until January 2010. Like its predecessor, the MetLife Stadium is the only NFL stadium shared by two clubs.

The stadium is owned by the New York Jets and New York Giants - which jointly built the stadium using private funds, and operate it through the New Meadowlands Stadium Company, LLC, a 50/50 joint venture between the two teams. The stadium opened as New Meadowlands Stadium on April 10, 2010, featuring the Big City Classic lacrosse event.[6] In 2011, MetLife, an insurance company based in New York City, acquired the naming rights to the stadium. At a construction cost of approximately $1.6 billion, it is the most expensive stadium ever built[7] and is the largest stadium in the NFL in terms of seating capacity.

History[edit]

As Giants Stadium approached 30 years of age, it was becoming one of the older stadiums in the NFL. The Jets, who had been the lesser tenants in the Meadowlands, sought to have their own stadium built in Manhattan proper, the proposed West Side Stadium. Originally intended to be the 85,000-seat main stadium for New York's bid for the 2012 Summer Olympics, it was designed to be downsized to 75,000 seats for the Jets. However, the West Side Stadium would have required significant public funding, which collapsed in 2005. The Jets then entered into a partnership with the Giants to build a new stadium in which the two teams would be equal partners.

Design[edit]

Construction on MetLife Stadium, as seen in 2007 (top) and 2008 (bottom) near Giants Stadium

The stadium is distinguished by an outer skin of aluminum louvers and by interior lighting that switches colors depending on which team is playing at home—blue for the Giants and green for the Jets.[8] This is a technique which originated at the Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany, which is shared between the city's two major soccer clubs, Bayern Munich and 1860 Munich. Essentially, unlike Giants Stadium, MetLife Stadium can easily be converted from a Giants game to a Jets game or vice versa within a matter of hours.[9] The special louvers and the associated hanging system were custom designed and manufactured by Overgaard Ltd. of Hong Kong, and Architectural Wall Systems of Des Moines, Iowa. The total linear length of louvers is exactly 50,000 meters (50 kilometers) or 163,681 feet (31.1 miles).

Front row 50 yard line seats are 46 feet (14 m) away from the sideline, which is the shortest distance of all NFL stadiums. To change the field decorations, two four-person crews take about 18 hours to roll up 40 sections of FieldTurf that make up the teams' respective endzones.[10] Unlike most NFL stadiums, the NFL's logo is painted at midfield instead of the logo of one of the teams, also shortening the transition time. The replaceable team logos at midfield were removed in August 2010, after Domenik Hixon tore his anterior cruciate ligament at a practice at the stadium during training camp.[11]

Unlike a number of other new NFL venues, MetLife Stadium does not have a roof, as proposals to include a roof failed due to a dispute over funding.[12] Thus, indoor events such as the Final Four cannot be held at the facility, which runs counter to the original aims for a new stadium in northern New Jersey.[13]

Twenty, giant high-definition-ready light emitting diode (LED) pylons designed, manufactured, and installed by Daktronics at the north and east entrances display videos of the team that is playing. The pylons measure approximately 54 feet (16 m) high by 20 feet (6.1 m) wide. Inside are four 30 feet (9.1 m) by 116 feet (35 m) video displays from Daktronics, which incorporate high definition video technology and hang from each corner of the upper deck.[14]

The new stadium has seating for 82,566 people, including 10,005 club seats and approximately 218 luxury suites, making it the second-largest NFL stadium in terms of total seating.[15]

lower bowl mid-bowl upper bowl
33,346 21,323 27,897

MetLife Stadium includes a total of four locker rooms: one for the Giants, one for the Jets and two for visiting teams. The home teams have locker rooms on opposite ends of the stadium with a visitors' locker room adjacent to it; the unused visitors' locker room is used as a spillover area by the home team on game days.[15][16]

Technical agreements[edit]

Lease terms[edit]

View of New Meadowlands Stadium (under construction) and Giants Stadium (on right) in July 2009

The lease for the new stadium is for 25 years, with options to extend it that could eventually reach 97 years. After the 15th year of the lease, every five years, one of the two teams may opt out of the lease after giving the state 12 months notice. However, if one team leaves for a new stadium, the other team would have to remain for the remainder of the lease. Based on the teams' histories, this clause presumably allows the Jets to eventually decide that they want to play in their own stadium and leave if they can find a way to finance it, although the high cost of the stadium and relocation of team facilities to New Jersey makes this unlikely (although the Jets have relocated their facilities to Florham Park, New Jersey). It is unknown if the lease starts upon construction or upon the stadium's opening. The teams also get parking revenue from the Meadowlands' western parking lots year round, even when there are no events at the stadium (this would occur when other parts of the Meadowlands host events).[17]

Naming rights[edit]

Allianz, a financial services and insurance company based in Germany, expressed interest in purchasing naming rights to the stadium. The proposal was for a period of up to 30 years,[18] and was estimated to be valued at between $20 million and $30 million USD. However, it sparked protests from New York's Jewish community (the largest outside of Israel) and the Anti-Defamation League, which opposed the move due to close ties in the past between Allianz and the government of Nazi Germany during World War II. However, Rabbi Jay Rosenbaum, secretary general of the North American Board of Rabbis, agreed that although survivors' sensibilities are understandable, a naming deal is legitimate. "I have found Allianz to be receptive, to be sensitive and a friend of the Jewish people today," he said.[19] Allianz sponsors the venue that inspired the color-change technology for MetLife Stadium: Allianz Arena in Munich. No agreement was reached and talks between Allianz and the teams ended on September 12, 2008.[20]

On June 27, 2011, it was reported that insurance company MetLife entered discussions to purchase naming rights to the stadium.[21] The new name, MetLife Stadium,[22] became official when all parties signed a 25-year deal on August 23.[23][24]

EPA agreement[edit]

The exterior of MetLife Stadium

In June 2009, the New Meadowlands Stadium Corporation and the EPA signed a memorandum of understanding that outlines plans to incorporate environmentally-friendly materials and practices into the construction and operation of MetLife Stadium. The agreement includes strategies to reduce air pollution, conserve water and energy, improve waste management, and reduce the environmental impact of construction. The goal of the agreement is to save the emission of nearly 1.68 million metric tons of carbon dioxide during the stadium's construction and its first year of operation. Under this agreement, the stadium construction must use around 40,000 tons of recycled steel, recycle 20,000 tons of steel from Giants Stadium, install seating made from recycled plastic and scrap iron, and reduce air pollution from construction vehicles by using cleaner diesel fuel, diesel engine filters, and minimizing engine idle times. Other goals of this agreement include providing mass transit options for fans and replacing traditional concession plates, cups and carries with compostable alternatives. The New Meadowlands Stadium Corporation is to report the progress on its goals to EPA every six months. Based on the reports, the EPA has stated it will quantify the benefits of the venue's environmental efforts.[25][26]

Transportation[edit]

MetLife Stadium is accessible via Exit 16W on the western spur of the New Jersey Turnpike and is also located adjacent to Route 3 and Route 120. Coach USA provides bus service between the stadium and the Port Authority Bus Terminal.[27]

The Meadowlands Rail Line operates on event days between the newly constructed Meadowlands Station and Hoboken Terminal via Secaucus Junction, where there is connecting service to Pennsylvania Station (New York City), Pennsylvania Station (Newark), and other New Jersey Transit rail operations. The line opened to the public on July 26, 2009.[28]

Notable events[edit]

WrestleMania 29[edit]

On April 7, 2013, WWE's 29th annual flagship event, WrestleMania 29 was held at MetLife Stadium. It drew 80,676 fans, which became the second highest attended event in the history of WWE after WrestleMania III

80,676 fans pack MetLife Stadium for WrestleMania 29

The event was the fifth WrestleMania in the New York metropolitan area; WrestleMania I, X, and XX were held at Madison Square Garden, and a portion of WrestleMania 2 was held at Nassau Coliseum. It was the third WrestleMania held in the state of New Jersey after WrestleMania IV and V, both of which were held at Trump Plaza/Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

The main event was John Cena challenging WWE Champion The Rock, also seeking to avenge his loss to The Rock at WrestleMania XXVIII. Also featured was CM Punk versus The Undertaker, concluding a storyline revolving around Paul Bearer's death and The Undertaker's WrestleMania winning streak. The penultimate match was Triple H versus Brock Lesnar in a No Holds Barred match; if Triple H lost, he would have to retire.

WrestleMania XXIX garnered 1,048,000 PPV buys, 205,000 fewer than the previous year's event.[29] The event set a new record for the highest grossing live event in WWE history, grossing $72 million.[30]

Super Bowl XLVIII[edit]

Inside MetLife Stadium during the first-ever preseason game held there, between the Giants and Jets on August 16, 2010

On May 25, 2010, it was announced that Super Bowl XLVIII was awarded to the stadium, the first time a Super Bowl would be played in the New York metropolitan area, and the first time that a non-domed stadium in a cold-weather city would host it.[31]

The Seattle Seahawks defeated the Denver Broncos 43–8 for their first Super Bowl victory, when MetLife Stadium hosted Super Bowl XLVIII on February 2, 2014.[32] The NFL requires that a Super Bowl hosting stadium must have an average temperature of 50 degrees or higher in February or be held in an indoor climate-controlled facility. However, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell waived this requirement. The stadium was allowed on the ballot because of a "unique, once-only circumstance based on the opportunity to celebrate the new stadium and the great heritage and history of the NFL in the New York region".[33][34]

Firsts and notable moments[edit]

Pre-game ceremony prior to the Jets-Cowboys game on September 11, 2011
  • September 12, 2010: The Giants host the first NFL regular season game in the stadium's history against the Carolina Panthers, winning 31–18.[35]
  • September 13, 2010: The Jets play their first game at the stadium, against the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football, losing 10–9.[36]
  • November 14, 2010: The stadium encounters two power outages during a game featuring the Giants and the Dallas Cowboys. The game is delayed about eight minutes.[37]
  • December 19, 2010: The Philadelphia Eagles stage a comeback against the Giants in what has become known as the Miracle at the New Meadowlands, coming back from being down 31–10 with about eight minutes to go in the fourth quarter to win 38–31, capped off by DeSean Jackson's game winning punt return when time expires.
  • September 11, 2011: On the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks, a ceremony is held prior to the game between the Jets and the Dallas Cowboys honoring the victims of the attacks.[38] The Jets defeated the Cowboys 27–24.[39]
  • December 24, 2011: The visiting Giants defeat the hosting Jets 29–14 in what is the biggest regular season match-up between the two New York teams in recent years, due to postseason implications for both sides. The victory helps propel the Giants into the playoffs while contributing significantly to eliminating the Jets from a postseason appearance.[40]
  • January 8, 2012: MetLife Stadium hosts its first NFL playoff game, with the Giants defeating the Atlanta Falcons 24–2 in an NFC Wild Card game,[41] en route to their Super Bowl XLVI championship.
  • November 22, 2012: During a 49-19 loss to the New England Patriots, Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez runs into the backside of teammate Brandon Moore, fumbling the ball, and leading to a Patriots touchdown, in an infamous play known as the butt fumble.
  • On November 23, 2014: During a 31-28 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football, Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. snagged a 43-yard one-handed touchdown catch from Eli Manning early in the second quarter. The catch, which was completed with only three fingers while Beckham was being interfered with, has been hailed by Cris Collinsworth, Tony Dungy, Victor Cruz and LeBron James as the best catch of all time.[42][43][44][45][46]

Concerts[edit]

Year Date Main act(s) Opening act(s) Tour Tickets sold / available Gross revenue
2010 May 26 Bon Jovi Train The Circle Tour 206,099 / 206,099 (100%)
(with July 9 show)
$21,386,437[47]
(with July 9 show)
May 27 Gavin DeGraw
May 29 OneRepublic
June 6 Usher, Ludacris, Fabolous and others 2010 Summer Jam 49,048 / 49,048 (100%) $4,308,316[48]
June 10 Eagles Dixie Chicks, Keith Urban Long Road Out of Eden Tour 31,482 / 33,564 (94%) $3,390,308[47]
July 9 Bon Jovi Kid Rock The Circle Tour (look above)
2011 June 5 Lil Wayne, Dipset, Wiz Khalifa and others 2011 Summer Jam 45,633 / 45,633 (100%) $4,791,268[49]
July 20 U2 Interpol U2 360° Tour 88,491 / 88,491 (100%) $8,927,150[50]
August 13 Kenny Chesney Zac Brown Band, Billy Currington, Uncle Kracker Goin' Coastal Tour 55,239 / 55,239 (100%) $5,058,534[51]
2012 June 3 Rick Ross, Young Jeezy, J. Cole and others 2012 Summer Jam 42,696 / 42,696 (100%) $4,597,632[52]
August 11 Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, Jake Owen Brothers of the Sun Tour 56,285 / 56,285 (100%) $5,523,669[53]
September 19 Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band Wrecking Ball World Tour 152,290 / 159,000 (95%) $14,409,760[54]
September 21
September 22
2013 June 2 Wu-Tang Clan, Miguel, Kendrick Lamar and others 2013 Summer Jam 41,598 / 41,598 (100%) $3,793,412[55]
July 13 Taylor Swift Ed Sheeran, Austin Mahone, Joel Crouse The Red Tour 52,399 / 52,399 (100%) $4,670,011[56]
July 25 Bon Jovi Because We Can 95,991 / 95,991 (100%) $9,594,635[57]
July 27
August 10 Kenny Chesney Eric Church, Eli Young Band, Kacey Musgraves No Shoes Nation Tour 53,416 / 53,416 (100%) $4,849,247[58]
2014 July 11 Beyoncé and Jay-Z On the Run Tour 89,165 / 89,165 (100%) $11,544,187[59]
July 12
August 4 One Direction 5 Seconds of Summer Where We Are Tour 139,247 / 139,247 (100%) $12,345,803
August 5
August 16 Eminem and Rihanna The Monster Tour 100,420 / 100,420 (100%) $12,358,850
August 17
2015 July 10 Taylor Swift Vance Joy, Shawn Mendes, HAIM The 1989 World Tour 110,105 / 110,105 (100%) $13,423,858
July 11
August 5 One Direction On The Road Again Tour TBA TBA
August 26 AC/DC Rock or Bust World Tour TBA TBA

International soccer matches[edit]

Date Team A Result Team B Tournament Attendance
May 7, 2010  Mexico 0-0  Ecuador International friendly (first soccer match at the stadium) 77,507
August 8, 2010  United States 0-2  Brazil International friendly 77,223
March 26, 2011  United States 1–1  Argentina International friendly 78,926
June 13, 2011  Costa Rica 2-2
(2-4 on PK's)
 Honduras 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarterfinals 78,807
 Mexico 2-1  Guatemala
June 9, 2012  Argentina 4-3  Brazil International friendly 81,994
November 14, 2012  Brazil 1–1  Colombia International friendly 38,624
August 4, 2013 Spain Valencia CF 4-0 Italy Inter Milan 2013 International Champions Cup 39,764
Italy AC Milan 0-2 England Chelsea FC
August 14, 2013  Mexico 4-1  Ivory Coast International friendly 35,671
November 15, 2013  Argentina 0-0  Ecuador International friendly 49,165
June 10, 2014  Portugal 5–1  Republic of Ireland International friendly 46,063
September 9, 2014  Brazil 1-0  Ecuador International friendly 35,975
March 31, 2015  Argentina 2-1  Ecuador International friendly 48,000
July 19, 2015  Trinidad and Tobago 1-1
(5-6 on PKs)
 Panama CONCACAF Gold Cup 2015 Quarterfinal Match 21
July 19, 2015  Mexico 1-0  Costa Rica CONCACAF Gold Cup 2015 Quarterfinal Match 22

Other events[edit]

The stadium hosted an international exhibition soccer match between the United States and Brazil on August 10, 2010. Brazil won 2–0 in front of a near-sellout crowd of 77,223; the game was played on a temporary grass field.[60][61]

On October 16, 2010, Rutgers hosted Army in the first college football game to be played in the new stadium, with the Scarlet Knights defeating the Black Knights in overtime, 23-20. During the game's second half, Rutgers player Eric LeGrand was injured on a special teams play, defending a Rutgers kickoff, and paralyzed from the neck down.

The stadium hosted another international friendly, between the United States and Argentina on March 26, 2011, which ended in a 1–1 draw and was played in front of a sellout crowd of 78,926.[62]

The stadium hosted the 12th Siyum HaShas, a celebration of the completion of the Talmud through the 7 12-year Daf Yomi study program, on August 1, 2012. At 93,000 seats, it was the highest capacity crowd in the stadium's history, due to on-field seating and a ticket sell-out. The siyum was a Department of Homeland Security level two security event, the most critical short of a presidential visit.[63][64]

On September 7, 2012, the stadium hosted the first New York's College Classic game, with the visiting USC Trojans defeating the Syracuse Orange, 42-29. Syracuse has relocated three of its home games from the Carrier Dome to MetLife Stadium in New Jersey under the banner of New York's College Classic, losing all three games, with a fourth to be played against Notre Dame in September 2014.

Since 2012, the stadium has been the main site of the two-day electronic music festival Electric Daisy Carnival's stop in the New York Metropolitan Area bringing electronic acts such as Armin Van Buuren, Hardwell, Porter Robinson, Tiesto, and many more.

Another exhibition match in preparation for 2014 FIFA World Cup was played on November 14, 2012 between Colombia and Brazil, with Brazil acting as the local team despite a higher affluence of Colombian fans.

On September 27, 2014, Syracuse Orange hosted Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the their fourth New York's College Classic, which boasted 76,802 fans in attendance. Syracuse lost their fourth straight classic to a score of 31-15.

References[edit]

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External links[edit]

Media from the New York Jets and New York Giants: