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Arthur Blank’s intentions for the dazzlingly complex, $1.6-billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium were to create a similar cultural hive for downtown Atlanta, the heartbeat of an entertainment and parks district that would bolster its neighboring communities. An instant landmark, the stadium’s wing-like exterior sections (an allusion to falcons in flight), 16-story “window to the city,” immense video halo board, and ocular roof of eight translucent petals have certainly made a splash.
Eleven days from the Atlanta Falcons' pre-season opener, the team hosted an open house on Tuesday for the media at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Crews are still working to ready the stadium for its debut, but the turf is in, the lines are painted, and the restaurants are firing up their grills.
The opening of Mercedes-Benz Stadium will mark a rite of passage not just for the Falcons or Blank, but for Atlanta itself. NFL stadiums—new NFL stadiums, that is, with gleaming features and staggering budgets—have become the sine qua non for the cities that claim a franchise. Want to host a Super Bowl? Build a new stadium. Want to ensure your home team doesn’t decamp to another city? Build a new stadium.
Concentrics—the team behind Atlanta’s One Midtown Kitchen and Two Urban Licks—is opening a restaurant at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Called Molly B’s, a nod to Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United owner Arthur Blank’s mother, it will open in the stadium's 100-level concourse this summer.
The largest free-standing bird sculpture in the world is about to rise up in front of the Atlanta Falcons' new home: Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
This Sunday, Arthur Blank's team could finally win its first Lombardi Trophy. Is the longtime Atlanta Falcons owner nervous? “No. I’m anxious for Sunday to get here.”
A quick primer to help you fit in at any Super Bowl Sunday soiree.
Arthur Blank knows his 31-year-old quarterback, Matt Ryan, so well that the two men often text each other, but even he was surprised last night when he saw Ryan told Pro Football Talk that he'd like to still be playing at Tom Brady’s age of 39. “Matt never told me that, so it made my night.”
Who says Atlanta doesn’t have enthusiastic sports fans? Atlanta United FC, the city’s new major league soccer team, sold record numbers of its new kit last night.
Atlanta Must Reads for the Week: Westside’s revival, Atlanta’s immigration courts, and the untold story of pool checkers
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