|United States of America
|Chicago Fire, Chicago Bears
|01/2002 - 09/2003
|$ 632 million
|Wood & Zapata, Lohan Caprile Goettsch Associates
|Turner, Barton Malow, Kenny
|425 East McFetridge Drive, Chicago, IL
Soldier Field – stadium description
Construction of Chicago's central stadium just south of downtown was launched in 1919 and ended in 1924. Soldier Field name was adapted soon after as memorial to fallen American soldiers.
Its architecture was monumental from the start, corresponding with other buildings of Chicago's lakeside. The U-shaped outer walls were built in Greco-Roman style with tall Doric colonnades on both east and west sides.
Initially immitating ancient buildings, these walls became a national historical landmark themselves over time. With citizens used to the stadium's appearance, the proposal to rebuild Soldier Field in 2001 caused massive criticism.
Despite strong opposition the plan was carried out in a unique way – the outer walls were left intact, but all stands inside were rebuilt from scratch, growing well above the old structures. After reopening in 2003 the stadium still raised controversy, losing its national landmark status on one side, but on the other being awarded superiority in design excellence by the American Institute of Architects in 2004.
With stands closer to the pitch and steeper, fans received more comfortable viewing, while the asymmetric layout with dynamic corporate building in the east gave it recognition and revenue boost. Capacity fell significantly, however, from the initial 74,280 to 61,500 seats.
Since reopening in 2003 the stadium has been the home of NFL Chicago Bears, also anchor tenants of the previous ground. Temporarily also the MLS Chicago Fire played home games here, before moving to Bridgeview. Also the national team in football uses the stadium, taking from its rich 'soccer' heritage, to name only the 1994 World Cup played at the previous stadium.
NFL: Bears finalize purchase of parcel for new stadium
All signs suggest that the Chicago Bears will soon leave Soldier Field. The club has officially acquired a 326-acre property in Arlington Heights. It is almost certain that a modern facility will be built there.
Copa America 2024: USA to host the tournament
CONMEBOL and CONCACAF have signed an agreement for the cooperation of international and club competitions. Under the contract, it was also agreed that the next edition of the Copa America would be organized by the United States. It will be the second such event organized by this country.
Chicago: Bears unveiled plans for Arlington Heights development
Last week, the Bears from the NFL unveiled a concept for the development of a site in the suburbs of Chicago. The area, which is currently home to a disused horse racing track, is to feature not only a new stadium, but also recreational and retail facilities as well as housing.
USA: Paul Brown Stadium to acquire a new sponsor?
Cincinnati Bengals’ home is about to change its name. The NFL team is closing in on a deal to change the venue’s naming rights. It is worth mentioning that it is the first sponsorship deal in the stadium’s history.
USA: New renderings of the dome over Soldier Field!
Chicago officials have just unveiled three concepts for the redevelopment of Soldier Field. This is in response to plans to move the local NFL franchise, Bears, out of the city and attempt to keep the team in the 'Windy City'. The most spectacular redevelopment proposal involves completely roofing the stadium.
USA: Chicago’s Soldier Field domed?
Windy City’s mayor Lori Lightfoot is doing everything in her power to keep the NFL team Chicago Bears at their current home along the lakefront. Lightfoot discussed a string of potential upgrades to the nearly 100-year-old venue. That includes adding a dome to the historic stadium, despite the likely departure of its tenants.
Chicago: Bears will move out of Soldier Field?!
The 1985 Super Bowl winners are seriously thinking about changing their home venue and moving to the suburbs. A property in Arlington Heights was secured last year and now the club has selected architects to design a new stadium.
USA: Your stadium guide for MLS 2021 is ready! [Eastern Conference]
MLS is finally back! Ahead of the new season with 27 clubs we have for you a stadium preview. Let's begin our guide with the Eastern Conference.
COVID-19 crisis: Growing uncertainty over NFL season
With just 2 months to go, reopening of the economy is being reversed as COVID-19 infections are through the roof in some states. Instead of rumours about full stadia it again seems more likely that NFL will be played behind closed doors.
Chicago: Fire and Bridgeview agree end of lease
Starting next year, Chicago Fire will be able to find a new home outside Bridgeview. So says the agreement reached by the village of Bridgeview and Fire, allowing termination of stadium lease.
Chicago: Fire to return to Soldier Field
When their new stadium first opened in 2006, it was a showcase of how MLS was to look. Just over a decade later, Chicago Fire need a relaunch in order to escape mediocrity. Soldier Field might be the answer.
Copa America Centenario: Record-breaking, but far from perfect
You only have a centenary once, so CONMEBOL celebrated with a massive party. And while Copa America Centenario was the largest ever, still one in three stadium seats remained empty.
Copa América Centenario: Greatest tournament ever… almost
No World Cup ever had stadiums as big as those of the ongoing Copa América 2016! Americans again outgrow the rest of the world, but… the ticket demand isn’t exactly there.
USA: Are these the venues for Copa America 2016?
We’ve had the last Copa America this year, but there’s one much, much bigger coming up in 2016. Why? It’s the centenary and USA will host one of the world’s largest tournaments. Again.
USA: Players and coaches with microphones?
In an attempt to bring more fans to NFL games, the league authorities are planning to plant microphones onto players and coaches, allowing everyone to hear what they say. According to Sports Business Journal, it’s a matter of a couple upcoming seasons.
USA: What’s better for matchday experience than a camera in the changing rooms?
American Football league NFL continues its efforts to compete with TV broadcasting. In another attempt to get fans off their couches and into the stands, the league has just mandated… changing room cameras.
USA: Bar-type standing terraces growing in the NFL?
An executive of the NFL predicts that future stadiums may be less about watching the game and more about a bar-type atmosphere of special decks with standing room. LA Times and NBC report.