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Jaguars debate TIAA Bank Field upgrades

The NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars are considering major upgrades to their home stadium, TIAA Bank Field.

At the 2019 State of the Franchise presentation, owner Shahid Khan and Jaguars president Mark Lamping both raised the issue.

Lamping stressed that improvements to the stadium were key to continuing to improve the franchise’s bottom line. He said:

Certainly, I don’t think there is any reason why this stadium couldn’t be a candidate for a major renovation, and we really haven’t gotten into the details, but we do recognise that it is an issue for many of our fans.

He said that only two NFL teams –Buffalo and Jacksonville – currently play in stadiums that have not been built or undergone in excess of $300 million in major renovations since TIAA Bank Field opened in 1995. He added:

We have looked at a number of concepts. I think some of the concepts have been there. I think we have about 10 or 11 years left on our lease here, and I think as part of the lease extension we are going to determine what the stadium solution would be.

If you are going to do something to that magnitude, you should be talking about it at least five years before you want it to be done. I would think it is not inconceivable that we will start discussions with the city, perhaps even during Mayor [Lenny] Curry’s tenure sometime over the next four years.

The Jaguars and the City have made multiple upgrades to the stadium in recent years, including adding two of the world’s largest outdoor videoboards at either end of the stadium, a spa/entertainment deck in the north end zone, a total renovation of the premium seating club space and renovations to the locker room and training facilities. Khan said:

If you look at all the upgrades that have happened – clubs, scoreboards, pools, Daily’s Place, we have been a big part of spending money with the city. We want to continue to invest with the city to make the stadium better.

Khan also noted that a roof isn’t the only approach to providing shade.

I think there are many, many creative solutions. There was a very creative solution with drones during a [soccer] game, kind of holding a cover up. It was very futuristic, but it could be very cost-effective only on the days you need it. I don’t know how feasible it is, but as an engineer when I saw that – that was for the World Cup in Qatar – I thought, ‘Boy, that [would] work very well for us.’ We want to look at creative solutions that are very cost-effective.

Lamping also stressed that the hope is that the Jaguars’ stadium remains in downtown Jacksonville.

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