The Jacksonville Jaguars NFL team has unveiled conceptual designs for its ‘Stadium of the Future’ project, which will see TIAA Bank Field undergo major renovation work.
The project, nearly three years in the making, is designed to inspire a “transformation” of Downtown Jacksonville and secure the Jaguars’ future in Northeast Florida. Reports have suggested the work could cost up to $1.4bn (£1.1bn/€1.3bn) to carry out.
Highlights of the plans include a subtropical Floridian park leading fans to the main concourse, which will be elevated to 30 feet above the ground. The 360-degree concourse will be four times wider than before and will feature interactive social bars and a range of unique experiences.
The seating bowl flexibility provides for a base capacity of 62,000 with expansion capabilities up to 71,500 for college football, and more for concerts. The current fixed-seat capacity of TIAA Bank Field is 68,000.
The Jaguars said the revamped stadium would be able to transform its appearance through lighting and digital technology that will create distinctive game-day experiences. Sustainability will also be a key factor, with the façade to be built with a first-of-its-kind mirrored material to reflect Jacksonville’s waterfront, vegetation and spirit.
The open-air venue will also feature a large shaded canopy that reduces heat retention by more than 70%, lowers temperatures by 10 to 15 degrees and protects fans from the weather. The façade will be raised at the northern and southern ends to optimise airflow, enabling passive cooling throughout the stadium.
Other features will include lookout decks offering citywide views, 13 new elevators and 32 new escalators, 220 new food and beverage points of sale, and 14 new restrooms. Construction of the revamped stadium is expected to generate thousands of jobs.
The Jaguars and City of Jacksonville officials commenced work towards a long-term stadium solution for the team back in July 2020. A thorough engineering assessment of TIAA Bank Field was carried out and it was decided that a renovation of the venue would be preferred to building a new stadium.
HOK’s Sports + Recreation + Entertainment practice was selected as the architect for the project team and has been working with the Jaguars on turning concepts into more definitive renovation plans. The project team also includes Impact Development and Management as the owner’s representative, with AECOM Hunt and Barton Malow serving in the role of preconstruction manager.
Over the next two weeks, the Jaguars will host a series of Huddle Up Jax events, where residents and fans can learn more about the ‘Stadium of the Future’ designs.
Jaguars owner Shad Khan said: “We have reached the end of this important and initial phase of this project, the design of the stadium we envision will be the home of the Jacksonville Jaguars and serve our entire community for generations to come.
“From stadium discussions starting in 2016 to the formal process launched in July 2020 and now concluding, our objective has always been the same – lock in a promising future for the Jaguars and help our downtown become an economic engine to lift all of Jacksonville, particularly areas that have been underserved. Being able to share the video and stadium design highlights with the people of Jacksonville is a significant step forward in that effort.
“This is also all happening at a fantastic time for everyone. Jacksonville is red hot. Just check out all of the recent rankings – best places to live, best housing market, hottest job market, best place to start a business, Jacksonville ranks within the top five in all of those lists. Add the fact the Jaguars are coming off a playoff season, and positioned for even better days ahead, and it all points to better and hopefully our best days just ahead in Jacksonville.”
Peter Broeder, HOK’s design principal, said: “This transformation transcends the stadium’s boundaries. The design creates an iconic, accessible community nexus that ties together the surrounding neighbourhoods and riverfront.
“The venue will celebrate Jacksonville’s natural landscape and climate, offering a park-like ambience enriched by the latest amenities, engaging social spaces and state-of-the-art technology. This unprecedented project will position Jacksonville as a premier destination for top-tier sports and entertainment events for decades to come.”
Jaguars president Mark Lamping added: “We fully anticipate a reimagined sports complex with the renovated stadium as its centrepiece will spark development in the east end of Downtown Jacksonville similar to the renaissance of the Brooklyn neighbourhood to the west.
“Combining the power of development to both the west and east of Downtown Jacksonville should create even more momentum in our downtown core, which is already set to benefit from The Shipyards project currently underway.
“Just as important, this project will provide a development boost to existing neighbourhoods around the sports complex, such as the OUTEAST neighbourhood. Our goal is simple — maximise every ounce of positive impact made possible by this project so all Jacksonville residents may benefit.”
The Jaguars’ current lease deal at TIAA Bank Field is due to expire in 2030.