University of Phoenix Stadium

University of Phoenix Stadium

University of Phoenix Stadium, home of the Arizona Cardinals, opened August 1, 2006.

The stadium is a multipurpose football stadium located at 1 Cardinals Drive, Glendale, Arizona, 85305
United States.

The University of Phoenix Stadium is the home of the Arizona Cardinals of the National Football League (NFL) and the annual Fiesta Bowl. It will also be the home for Super Bowl XLIX in 2015.

The stadium is located next door to the Arena, home of the Phoenix Coyotes of the National Hockey League.

It features the first fully retractable natural grass playing surface built in the United States on top of an AirField Systems drainage system. An opening on one side of the stadium allows the playing field to move to the exterior of the building, allowing the entire natural turf playing surface to be exposed to daylight.

The stadium has hosted Super Bowl XLII, WrestleMania XXVI and the 2011 BCS National Championship Game, a game that it hosts every four years, which set the venue’s entertainment attendance record of 78,603 on January 11, 2011. It will again host Super Bowl XLIX in 2015.

Shortly after the stadium opened it was renamed from Cardinals Stadium to the University of Phoenix. The stadium is named such after its corporate sponsor, not as the home stadium for the University which offers no intercollegiate athletic programs.

After three years under construction, the 63,400-seat stadium (expandable to at least 78,600) opened on August 1, 2006.

The stadium is considered an architectural icon for the region and was named by Business Week as one of the 10 “most impressive” sports facilities on the globe due to the combination of its retractable roof (engineering design by Walter P Moore to a scheme design by Buro Happold) and roll-in natural grass field, similar to the Veltins-Arena. It is the only American facility on the list.

The project cost $455 million to compete. That total included $395.4 million for the stadium, $41.7 million for site improvements, and $17.8 million for the land. Contributors to the stadium included the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority ($302.3 million), the Arizona Cardinals($143.2 million), and the City of Glendale ($9.5 million).

The stadium has 88 luxury suites — called luxury lofts — with space for 16 future suites as the stadium matures.

The 25 acres (10 ha) surrounding the stadium is called Sportsman’s Park. Included within the Park is an 8-acre (3.2 ha) landscaped tailgating area called the Great Lawn.

There are no obstructed view seats in the stadium. There are visible areas in the upper deck of the end zone where seats could have been put in but were not due to the giant super columns supporting the roof structure.

Glendale Arizona’s Westgate City Center is a 223-acre (0.90 km2), mixed-used development that will ultimately include up to 8,000,000 square feet (740,000 m2) of shopping, dining, entertainment, high-end condominiums, parks, and office space. It is anchored by Arena, home of the Phoenix Coyotes, and adjacent to the University of Phoenix Stadium, home to the Arizona Cardinals and Super Bowl XLII.

Development of Westgate City Center began with the construction of the Arena, then referred to as the Glendale Arena. Construction of the Arena was completed in late 2003 and it hosted its first NHL game on December 27 of that same year, while construction of the remainder of Westgate’s Entertainment District began in October 2005, opening one year later.

The project has been split into multiple phases to facilitate construction and development. Phase I, the initial 510,000-square-foot (47,000 m2) development, opened to the public on November 17, 2006 in limited fashion with only a few restaurants and a sports merchandise store, with other retailers, restaurants and a 20-screen theater opening in the following weeks.

Phase I also includes an upmarket 12-story Renaissance Hotel completed in mid 2007, and a convention center, as well as outdoor entertainment facilities.

Westgate City Center is now home to more than 30 bars and restaurants as well as a mix of national, regional and local retailers.

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