Venue News: Lucas Oil Stadium Preps for Super Bowl XLVI; Selig Addresses A’s Ballpark Issue

The day after the Indianapolis Colts’ final loss of the season, the plan for Super Bowl XLVI was put into action at Lucas Oil Stadium in downtown Indianapolis. The work began on the outside of the stadium in the parking lot. Temporary structures and gates with electricity will accommodate the thousands of fans and members of the media that need to be screened for security heading into the stadium. The next phase of stadium preps will be inside, where Lucas Oil Stadium officials have already removed some seats so work stations for media coverage can be put into place. In other areas — those normally reserved for wheelchairs — seats have been added. At Super Bowl XLV at Cowboys Stadium, more than 95,000 fans were in attendance. This year the number will be dramatically less; approximately 67,700 are expected. The NFL originally planned to add thousands of seats on temporary structures, but that plan at Cowboys Stadium backfired when several thousand temporary seats did not meet safety standards and were closed, leaving some fans with nowhere to sit. This year, the NFL is only planning to add 200 additional seats. They will be part of suites set up in the plaza area of the stadium…

…Speaking with reporters after the annual MLB owners’ winter meeting, Commissioner Bud Selig firmly declared the next task at the top of his “to-do” list. It was a settlement of the Oakland A’s ballpark situation, and specifically, whether they can pursue a stadium project in San Jose over objections from the San Francisco Giants, who claim Santa Clara County as their exclusive territory. On Wednesday afternoon, the eight-person MLB executive council spent almost 40 minutes in session with the special committee appointed by Selig in 2009 to examine the A’s ballpark dilemma. The A’s issue never made it onto the agenda of Thursday morning’s meeting at which all 30 owners participated; however, Selig said he still anticipated a decision soon, which would then require a 75% affirmative vote of those owners. Their next scheduled meeting is set for May in New York. A vote could also be conducted by phone any time…

…In partnership with Aramark, Quicken Loans Arena is introducing SmartTouch technology using Apple’s iPad into its 92 luxury suites to deliver guests a richer hospitality experience.  Home to the NBA Cleveland Cavaliers and AHL Lake Erie Monsters, Quicken Loans Arena is the first sports and entertainment facility in the country to debut the innovative SmartTouch technology that enables suite guests to order food and drinks, purchase merchandise, event tickets, and more with a tap of a screen, all from the their suite.  SmartTouch is a fully customizable interactive guest experience operating on a 19-inch iPad 2 that enables two-way communication in real time…

…The Santa Clara City Council has approved a deal that allows 49er’s fans attending games at the proposed $1 billion football stadium to park in the Great America Theme Park lot. Tuesday’s 4-2 vote clears one of the last remaining hurdles for the stadium project. Cedar Fair, which owns Great America, had been opposed to ceding part of its parking lot for the stadium. 49ers fans will be able to park in most of Great America’s main lot, which will be renovated to include as many as 7,000 spaces. Additional parking will be in two nearby city garages. The deal calls for Cedar Fair to drop its lawsuit. The 49ers will pay Cedar Fair $12.5 million as part of the parking agreements.

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