GWCC gets first look at newest design plans for new Falcons stadium

by: John Bachman Updated:


ATLANTA - Monday, the Georgia World Congress Center Authority got a look at the latest design of the new Falcons' football stadium.

Channel 2 Action News first showed released the new schematics last week.

Monday the team's president Rich McKay also officially announced the new price tag is $1.2 billion. That's up $200 million, but McKay said the increase was not unexpected.

He added that if you want to build the stadium of all stadiums, you have to pay for it. McKay said putting the stadium on the south site added costs, but attributes a majority of the extra cost in the stadium's unique design.

"There's 150-plus people across country, a lot of which in Atlanta, every day all they do is work on this project," McKay said.

Monday, the Falcons presented their concepts to the Georgia World Congress Center Authority board, which is expected to approve them Tuesday. They include plans for seating around a soccer field.

Falcons owner Arthur Blank has said he wants Major League Soccer in Atlanta.

Frank Poe, the executive director of the Georgia World Congress Center, said that's up to Blank, but designers are planning ahead.

"You certainly at this stage make provisions for that even though there may not be a team in place right now," Poe said.

The designs show a retractable roof unique to this stadium, one of the many special designs McKay attributes to the added cost and the $1.2 billion price tag.

"We feel pretty good that the building as designed can be delivered at the number we think and public runs no risk with that number, we take all the risk," McKay said.

The City of Atlanta committed $200 million from the hotel-motel tax fund for the stadium. That has not changed.

The Falcons are paying for any cost over-runs. One thing that is still to be determined is Personal Seat Licenses and the fees season ticket holders will pay for the right to buy their tickets.

It is a way the Falcons will pass some of the cost on to fans. McKay said that discussion won't happen for at least a couple more months.