Cost to dress up the Georgia Dome? $549 million

The Atlanta Falcons are seeking a new open-air stadium but an architect’s study that was ordered by the Georgia World Congress Center Authority discovered that the Georgia Dome could be renovated and have a retractable roof thrown on the top of the building at a cost of $549 million.

The rebuilding effort would double the number of club seats in the building and also significantly add available parking space. But with such a steep price tag -- $200 million alone would be needed for the retractable roof, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution – why not just build a brand new stadium?

Falcons team president Rich McKay told the newspaper last month that a retractable roof stadium would be too expensive and dressing up the Georgia Dome would not provide the football team the state-of-the-art facility it seeks. The Falcons are interested in playing in an open-air stadium. Obviously, Atlanta’s ability to draw the SEC Championship Game as well as the Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl could be dependent on having a stadium with a roof.

“The Authority has shared the report with us as part of our joint exploration of development options,” Falcons spokesman Reggie Roberts told the Journal-Constituion. “We continue to have open discussions with the Authority on a range of topics. No decisions have been made and no options have been taken off the table.”

Since it’s not our money, it’s very easy for us to throw out some ideas here. A cost of $549 million to renovate the Georgia Dome seems way high when you can spend a little more and get a completely new stadium. But, again, it’s not our money here.

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