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Pontiac Silverdome

Pontiac Silverdome

  Venue Particulars  
Address 1200 Featherstone Road
Pontiac, MI 48342
Seating Weather
Satellite View
  Ballparks Virtual Mall  
Lions Gear
Hotels, Dining & Deals in Detroit

  The Facility  
Date Opened August 23, 1975
The City of Pontiac
(Pontiac Stadium Building Authority)
Surface AstroTurf
Cost of Construction $55.7 million
Former Names Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium
Stadium Financing $15.9 million in general obligation notes; $25 million in revenue bonds; $8 million in interest.
Capacity 80,311
Luxury Suites 102 Suites
Club Seats 7,384
  Other Facts  
Former Tenants Detroit Lions
(NFL) (1975-2001)
Detroit Pistons
(NBA) (1978-1988)
Michigan Panthers
(USFL) (1983-1984)
Detroit Express
(NASL) (1978-1980)
Cherry Bowl (NCAA)
Motor City Bowl
(NCAA) (1997-2001)
Population Base 5,000,000
On Site Parking 12,774
Nearest Airport Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW)
Retired Numbers #7 Dutch Clark
#22 Bobby Layne
#37 Doak Walker
#56 Joe Schmidt
#85 Chuck Hughes
#88 Charlie Sanders

Sources: Mediaventures

Pontiac Silverdome

The Pontiac Silverdome has been "Home Sweet Home" for the Detroit Lions since the last brick was put in place in 1975. During the past 20 years, the building has earned a reputation as one of the finest sports facilities in the world. Not even a freak, late-winter snowstorm on March 4, 1985, which caused extensive structural damage to the roof, could keep the Silverdome from maintaining its enviable stature in the sports world. A new canvas and steel-girder reinforced roof was added between March and June of 1985.

The Silverdome has the largest seating capacity (at 80,368) among NFL stadiums. The air-supported and cable-restrained facility is the largest of its kind in the world and is the first successful example of a fiberglass fabric roof system.

Since a 27-24 pre-season game victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on Aug. 23, 1975, the Lions have played 161 games in the Silverdome after moving from their former home at Tiger Stadium in downtown Detroit. The Dallas Cowboys defeated the Lions, 36-10, in the first regular-season game in the building, Oct. 6, 1975. The Lions have posted a 90-70-1 (a .562 percentage) in the regular season at the Silverdome, (not including a 1-1 record in playoff contests). On January 5, 1992, the Lions defeated the Dallas Cowboys, 38-6, in the first playoff game held at the Silverdome. The victory capped an undefeated home season for the Lions as they finished a perfect 9-0 in games played in the Silverdome.

Though the Silverdome is the Lions' home, the Cincinnati Bengals and the San Francisco 49ers made NFL history in the building. On Jan. 24, 1982, the 49ers defeated the Bengals, 26-21, before a crowd of 81,270 in Super Bowl XVI -- the first Super Bowl ever played in a northern U.S. city.

During the summer of 1994, the Silverdome was the site of the first World Cup Soccer match ever played in a domed stadium. New ground was broken as natural grass was brought into the Silverdome for four soccer matches.

The Silverdome was built at a cost of $55.7 million. It was occupied in just 23 months, on time and within budget, from its ground breaking on Sept. 19, 1973. During the roof's reconstruction in 1985, the Teflon-coated fiberglass panels that span the roof (100 in all) were completely replaced, and several structural modifications and safety improvements also were accomplished. The roof was re-inflated by workmen on May 30, 1985.

Cost: $55.7 Million
Construction completed on time (23 months) and on budget.
1.5 million cubic yards of earth moved for construction.

Materials Used: 52,000 cubic yards of concrete
1,700 tons of structural steel
10 acre Teflon-coated Fiberglas roof
18 large steel cables: vary 550 to 750 feet, weighing up to 15,000 lbs. each
10 - 75 hp fans and 15 - 100 hp fans
50 revolving doors
93 pressure balance doors

Building Size: Overall- 770ft. x 600ft.
Playing Field- 94,000 sq. ft.
Lower Concourse- 25,000 sq. ft.

$15.9 million in General Obligation Notes issued by the City of Pontiac.
$25 million in Revenue Bonds sold by the Pontiac Stadium Building Authority.
$8 million interest on bond money prior to construction.
$7.76 million installment loan for addition of an air supported roof, to be paid for out of stadium revenues.
Owner: Pontiac Stadium Building Authority
Groundbreaking: September 19, 1973

First Game: August 23, 1975-Detroit Lions-27, Kansas City Chiefs-24

Site: 132 total acres:100 acres - Parking Lot
20 acres - Silverdome

Lower Level: 42,082
    Bench Seats-(3,634)
Club Level-7,342
Upper Level-29,399
Private Suites-1,246

Football, Soccer, Supercross, Tractor Pull, Rodeos: 80,325
Political Rallies, Religious Crusades: 90,000
Concerts: 22,000 to 55,000

On-Site (100 acres, lighted, paved)
Automobile - 12,464
    Handicap - (389)

Auxiliary - 2,200
Off Site - 6,500

Executive Suites - 93
Concessions - 42
Restaurant - 1
Banquet Rooms - 2
Rest Rooms - 44
Press Area (Capacity) - 300
Private Offices - 7
Storage Buildings - 2
Warehouses - 2
Practice Facilities - 2

Area - 430,000 sq. ft. (10 acres)
Height - 202 ft.
Weight - 200 tons
Material - Teflon-coated Fiberglas
Panels - 100
Pressure - Air supported at 5 lbs. Per square foot

Field Lighting
There are 311 lamps to our field lighting system. Average Lumens 140,000
Warm Up Time 2-4 minutes
Re-Start Time 10-15 minutes

The 87,340-sq. ft. "Magic Carpet" system uses a series of air jets to float the one
piece synthetic turf field over the stadium floor.  The turf stores on a huge mechanical spool
in a pit below the floor.  It takes a crew of ten 30 minutes to install the playing field.

The lighting inside the Silverdome is designed to capture the natural sunlight that filters through the translucent roof and to provide a balance between that sunlight and the artificial lights that surround the perimeter inside the Silverdome. (On a dark, overcast day or during events held during late afternoon or evening hours, the outside lighting will have no effect on exposure.)
Recommended film speed under all conditions: ASA 400
When photographing events on the playing field (lighting tends to be less in the stands), the recommended exposure is:
For early evening or night events: 1/125 of a second with a lens aperture of F 5.6
For events held during sunny days: 1/250 of a second with a lens aperture of F 5.6
Various other exposure combinations may be used, but they must be equivalent to the above to be correctly exposed for best color.
The lights inside the Silverdome match very closely that of natural sunlight. It is recommended that, when other types of color films are used, great care be taken to ensure that the film is the daylight type.

Stadium Policies
Alcohol Management
The open consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited at all Silverdome operated parking lots. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed to be removed from inside the stadium to the parking lot areas.

Guests may not bring alcoholic beverages into the stadium. Guests may either leave the items at the gate - items will not be returned - or return items to their vehicle.

Guests who appear to be visibly intoxicated will not be allowed entrance to the Silverdome. Tickets will not be sold to guests to appear to be intoxicated.

Possession of alcoholic beverages not purchased from the stadium concessionaire inside the stadium will result in confiscation of said alcohol and possible ejection. Disorderly guests causing disturbances affecting other guests will be ejected from the stadium. No sale of alcoholic beverages will be made to anyone under the age of 21. Identification will be checked. Only two (2) alcoholic beverages will be served at one time.

During Detroit Lions games, alcohol sales will terminate at a time predetermined by Silverdome Management. Termination time is posted in all concession stands.

Silverdome Management, at its sole discretion, may dictate that all alcoholic beverage sales be stopped at any time.

Only service animals trained to assist the disabled are allowed in the Silverdome.

Banners are allowed in the Silverdome as long as they are not on a stick, pole or contain offensive language. Banners may not be hung where they will obstruct the view of other guests, hinder any activity on the field, contain advertising or cover existing advertising. Any banner determined by Silverdome Management to be a hazard or inappropriate will be removed.

For most events, still cameras (no flash) are allowed while video cameras are prohibited. Please check with the Ticket Office prior to bringing your camera/video recorder to the event.

Coolers are permitted in the Silverdome as long as they take up no more space than found under one seat, are constructed of soft material, and contain no cans, bottles or alcoholic beverages.

Guest Conduct
To ensure the enjoyment of all who visit our facility, proper behavior is expected of all guests at the Pontiac Silverdome. Unruly or inconsiderate behavior will not be tolerated, and may be grounds for ejection from the Silverdome and/or revocation of ticket privileges. Such behavior includes, but is not limited to: abuse of intoxicants; profane or abusive language or gestures; offensive or disorderly conduct; the throwing of any object; standing or sitting in the aisles or behind the last row of seats; smoking inside the Silverdome; possession of any prohibited items; possession of alcohol in the No Alcohol sections; entering or attempting to enter the field level or playing field; wearing any apparel with profane or abusive language; failure to follow the instructions of Silverdome personnel; actions that may harm or endanger others; and other such conduct that is beyond the bounds of reasonableness for spectators attending an event in the Silverdome.

Inspection Policy
All guests entering the Silverdome are subject to a visual inspection of person, parcels, bags and containers capable of carrying prohibited items.

Prohibited items include, but are not limited to: bottles (glass or plastic), cans, hard-case containers, alcoholic beverages, missile-like objects and weapons. Noise-makers, flags/banners/signs that are mounted on a stick or pole are not allowed. Recording devices, such as video recorders, tripods and audio tape recorders are also not allowed.

Guests may refuse inspection; if so, Silverdome Management may refuse entry into the stadium.

No Smoking Policy
The Pontiac Silverdome is a smoke-free facility. There is no smoking in any public area including seating areas, concourses, rest rooms, Press box, tunnel areas, or concession stand areas. Any guest wishing to smoke must go outside of the revolving doors located on all levels.

Guests may not leave the Silverdome and re-enter on a ticket stub during any event.

No loitering; trespassing; soliciting or peddling; resale or unauthorized distribution of tickets, merchandise or apparel; or placing of handbills is allowed on Silverdome property.

The Silverdome reserves the right to alter and interpret these regulations. In addition, this page contains only a summary of the regulations that most often are of interest to our guests. If you have any questions regarding Silverdome regulations, please call the Executive Offices in advance of your visit. Our staff will be happy to assist you.

Guest Services is located at the West Gate, Section 129 on the Lower Level. This office handles lost and found, emergency phone registration, lost children, guest assistance, and general information. During major events, there are also Guest Services at Section 213 on the Club Level and Section 335 on the Third Level. These locations handle guest assistance and general information.

Automobile Problems
Should you have a problem such as keys locked in a car, dead battery, etc., please contact Security or Silverdome personnel for assistance.

Emergency Phone Calls
Paging is not permitted during the event. If you are expecting an emergency phone call, please register your seat location at Security, Lower Level, Section 125. If a call is received, Silverdome personnel will be sent to your seat location with a message.

Guest Surveys
Your input, both positive and negative, is important to Silverdome Management. Guest surveys are available at all concession stands and may be dropped in the mailboxes located at the concession stands, returned by mail (postage is prepaid), or given to any Silverdome personnel.

The Silverdome is available to the general public for jogging and walking during the winter season. This program is offered on the same dates and times as rollerblading (usually November through April). Joggers/walkers utilize the Club Level, while rollerblading takes place on the Upper Level concourse. You must obtain an ID pass issued in advance at the Silverdome Ticket Office. Identification is required to obtain the pass and a yearly fee will be charged. Passes will not be issued at the gate during jogging/walking hours. For further information, contact the Silverdome Ticket Office.

Location of Facilities
Advance Ticket Sales
During most major events, tickets for upcoming events are available at the East Gate Ticket Office located at Section 112 on the Lower Level.

Cash Machine
A cash dispensing machine is located on the concourse by Security at Section 125 on the Lower Level.

Diaper Changing Stations
Located in all women's and selected men's rest rooms on all three levels.

Drinking Fountains
Drinking fountains, including those for our disabled guests, are located at the entrances to the rest rooms on all levels.

Lost and Found
Located at Security, Section 125 on the Lower Level.

Main Event Restaurant
Access to the Main Event from inside the stadium is at the North Stair Tower on the Club Level, or for our guests with disabilities, via the elevator at Section 125 on the Lower Level. The entrance to the Main Event, on non-event days, is located between the North Gate and the Detroit Lions Ticket Office. During most major events, a ticket is required for access. For operating times or to book a banquet, please contact the Main Event Restaurant.

Medical Assistance/First Aid
Medical assistance is available during all events in the Silverdome. The First Aid room is located at Section 109 on the Lower Level.

Executive Suites
The 93 Executive Suites in the Silverdome are located on the Club Level. Suites are available on a per event basis. For information, please contact the Silverdome Executive Offices.

Public Telephones
Public telephones are located on all levels of the Silverdome. Telephones also are located outside the perimeter fencing at all entrance gates for those guests outside of the stadium.

The Security office located at Section 125 on the Lower Level is staffed 24 hours a day.

June 3, 1999
Copyright 1999 MediaVentures

A reconfiguration of the Silverdome will allow the Detroit Lions to offer a family area for its home games. The area features seats priced at $25 each. No alcohol or profanity will be allowed in the area .

November 29, 2001 (AP) - The Detroit Lions and the city of Pontiac reached an agreement that will allow the team to get out of its 30-year Silverdome lease, according to a settlement negotiator.

Elbert Hatchett, a Pontiac attorney, told the Detroit News in today's edition that a settlement had been reached.

The Lions plan to open the 2002 season at Ford Field, a $315 million stadium under construction in downtown Detroit.

September 17, 2009
Copyright 2009 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - The former home of the Detroit Lions, the Pontiac Silverdome, will be auctioned to the highest bidder by the end of the year without a minimum bid requirement.

City officials say they need the money and too much time has been spent trying to craft a future for the unused facility. The decision was made by the city's emergency financial manager who was appointed by the governor to deal with the city's unresolved budget problems.

The city, with a $6.5 million deficit from last year and $106 million in debt, can't afford the $1.5 million it's paying annually in upkeep, security and insurance for the shuttered facility and its 127-acre site, officials said.

In 2002, the city started accepting bids and proposals in a negotiation process that would last until 2006. Three finalists presented plans that included businesses, residential structures and entertainment venues with purchase offers between $11 million and $18.5 million. By February 2006, the two remaining proposals were withdrawn.

In 2007, another attempt to sell the Silverdome began. Last year the City Council approved a $20 million offer from Bloomfield Hills attorney H. Wallace Parker and his Silver Stallion Development Corp. that would have brought a hotel, casino, conference center and horse racetrack to the site. The mayor vetoed the sale but the City Council overrode it. Negotiations were not completed by the November deadline.

The city council two weeks ago rejected the manager's plan, but the manager has the power to override the council and made the decision to move ahead.

November 19, 2009
Copyright 2009 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - A Toronto real estate firm submitted the winning bid to take over the Pontiac Silverdome and the 127 acres surrounding the former home of the Detroit Lions. The firm agreed to pay $583,000 for the property that cost $55.7 million to build in 1975.

But just a day after the bid was awarded, a local attorney sought and obtained an injunction blocking the sale. H. Wallace Parker, president and CEO, of Silver Stallion Development Corp.

argued to the court that sale of the 80,000-seat dome violates a purchase agreement between himself and the city. Parker wants to create a horse-themed park. A hearing is set for next week.

In July, 2008 the Pontiac City Council approved a purchase agreement for Parker to purchase the property for $20 million, later reduced to $17 million. It was signed by Parker in August, 2008. However, at the time, Mayor Clarence Phillips issued a veto of the purchase agreement on the basis that Parker would be unable to fund the $250 million project.

The court action will delay the deal's closing. The winning firm is said by the city to be a straw buyer and that the actual buyer's name will not be released until the closing takes place.

The unidentified winning bidder plans to use the complex for a men's Major League Soccer team and women's professional soccer, auction officials said.

MLS is a 15-team league that will be expanding to 18 teams by 2011. Commissioner Don Garber said in his state of the league address this week that he believes the league will eventually have 20 teams but did not give a timetable. He was asked specifically about Detroit and said he has had no talks with Detroit officials.

"Today, we believe we are going to be a 20-team league," Garber said in his address. "What we think in 2020 or 2025, I can't answer and won't be around to have to address. This is a big country, it's the size of a continent, and along with Canada, it gets even bigger."

Garber acknowledged there are ongoing talks with Montreal about becoming the 19th team, but there is not a timetable and there are no active discussions regarding the 20th team.

One expansion franchise is starting in Philadelphia in 2010 and two more are approved in Vancouver and Portland for 2011. Vancouver and Portland were approved in March. Markets must submit bids, which are then reviewed and must be ratified by the MLS Board of Governors for franchise approval.

The city has been trying to sell the Silverdome which costs $1.5 million a year for upkeep. When no satisfactory buyer could be found, the city decided to put the 80,000-seat venue and its property up for auction.

December 3, 2009
Copyright 2009 MediaVentures

An Oakland County Circuit Court judge has cleared the way for the city of Pontiac to sell the Silverdome. The auction sale had been held up because of complaints from a losing bidder. After the court reviewed the process, Judge Edward Sosnick allowed the sale to continue. The venue will now go to Triple Properties of Toronto, Canada for $583,000. The firm plans a mixed-use development, including the possibility of a Major League Soccer venue.

March 18, 2010
Copyright 2010 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - The new owner of the Pontiac Silverdome says he has been getting inquires from people wanting to use the building and he hopes to have events scheduled soon.

Andreas Apostolopoulos bought the venue during an auction last November for $583,000. He plans to invest additional money in upgrading the facility.

In May, the Silverdome will host its first event in years. The two-day Green Soccer Bowl will include national teams from Kenya, Puerto Rico, Malaysia and World Cup-bound Ghana.

August 12, 2010
Copyright 2010 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - Silverdome owners led by Steve and Andreas Apostolopoulos say they want to increase the number of soccer events at the venue and may renovate the venue in hopes of being awarded a team by Major League Soccer, according to

"We would like to create something big here in Pontiac," Steve Apostolopoulos, the director of sports at the Silverdome and son of Andreas, told the web site. "We have the land and we have a great opportunity, and we want to do something that's beneficial to the area."

The venue last week hosted an exhibition match between Italian mega-club AC Milan and Greek powerhouse Panathinaikos.

Under the plan, the nearly 35-year old former home of the Detroit Lions could be renovated into a never-before-seen facility, the site reported.

The standard for soccer-specific stadiums ranges from the 18,000-seat Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo. (home of the Colorado Rapids), to the 27,000-seat Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. where the Los Angeles Galaxy and Chivas USA both call home, it was reported.

To achieve a reasonable stadium size, the Apostolopoulos family plans to remove the dome and divide the stadium into three sections. At the stadium's ground level, will be a concert hall and a multi-purpose arena, capable of hosting hockey, basketball, and other indoor sports, said.

Resting on top of those two indoor facilities, will be a roughly 30,000-seat soccer stadium with natural grass. The current upper deck will essentially act as a lower bowl for the outdoor stadium.

October 21, 2010
Copyright 2010 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - The new operators of the Silverdome are seeking $750,000 in damages from a group of promoters following a failed Indian musical concert last June, according to the Detroit News.

The Silverdome's owner-operators, Triple Sports and Entertainment of Toronto, claim they're owed a month's rent by Palace Entertainment Group Inc. of Shelby Township and others after a stage collapse forced the cancellation of the concert by the composer of "Slumdog Millionaire" and left them with a stadium full of debris and materials.

According to the Oakland Circuit Court complaint, Palace Entertainment Group contracted with Triple Sports and Entertainment to hold the "Indian Musical Live Concert" event inside the Silverdome June 20 for $20,000 a day plus fees.

After the stage collapse the day before the event - which left several stage workers injured and prompted the cancellation - materials were left for insurance companies to examine and the mess was not removed until July 30, according to the complaint.

Elizabeth Thomson, an attorney for Palace Entertainment Group, which is not connected to The Palace of Auburn Hills, told the News the suit is a "farce."

"The truth is they're having trouble booking that place, and they stand to make more money with something like this than if they had booked that show," she said.

With accumulating interest, the Silverdome seeks a judgment of $25,000 a day - more than $750,000 - plus damages to be determined.

June 9, 2011
Copyright 2011 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - Triple Sports & Entertainment, the owners of the Pontiac Silverdome has plans to bring a Major League Soccer expansion team to the newly-resurrected facility, the Bay City Times reported.

The company has submitted an application to Major League Soccer with the goal of fielding a team in the next few years. However, they will have to get in line as bringing a second franchise to the New York market is currently front and center according to MLS officials.

"We're in discussions with the league, and we've met several times," said Steve Apostolopoulos, the director of sports at the Silverdome. "There is a process that potential ownership has to follow and we're very happy with how things are progressing."

In 2012, the league will welcome Montreal as its 19th franchise and all efforts are being made to make sure a team based in the Big Apple is next in line.

"MLS is aware of the interest from the Apostolopoulos family in securing an MLS team in Detroit," MLS spokesperson Will Kuhns told the newspaper in an e-mail. "The League maintains its current focus on New York as a possible home for the 20th team."

The Toronto-based Triple Sports made headlines in the Fall of 2009 with the purchase of the vacant Silverdome in a private auction for the bargain price of $583,000. When they acquired the stadium, which had not been used since the Detroit Lions left after the 2001 NFL season, they announced they had plans to revive the stadium and to acquire an MLS franchise to play in it. Since then, the group has fixed up the stadium to host a variety of events like concerts, motorcross races and monster truck rallies.

Since 80,000 seats is too much for even MLS' top draw, the Times said the Apostolopoulos family plans to remove the dome and divide the stadium into three sections.

At the stadium's ground level, will be a convention center/concert hall as well as a multi-purpose arena, capable of hosting hockey, basketball, and other indoor sports.

Resting on top of those two indoor facilities, will be a roughly 30,000-seat outdoor soccer stadium with natural grass. The current upper deck will essentially act as a lower bowl for the outdoor stadium.

In theory, the facility could house as many as 70,000 people at one time.

The construction to pull off the renovation, which will employ as many as 2,500 workers, can be completed very quickly because of the unique arrangement, the newspaper said.

"The good thing about these renovations is that 99 percent of the construction can be done under the dome, so you could have two or three shifts and have construction running 24 hours a day without any weather issues. So if we get approved, things can move very fast."

The bones of the building are in "amazing shape" which bodes well for the transformation, which could be completed in less than a year, Apostolopoulos told the Times.

October 13, 2011
Copyright 2011 MediaVentures

Detroit, Mich. - A group of Detroit soccer enthusiasts have disclosed on their web site plans for renovation of the Pontiac Silverdome into a Major League Soccer venue.

The Daily Tribune in Oakland County says Motor City Supporters has revealed two drawings of the Silverdome redesigned to support a soccer team.

Silverdome officials have confirmed Canadian owner Andreas Apostolopoulos wants to bring a soccer team to the venue.

Apostolopoulos, who was born in Greece and owns millions of dollars worth of property in Canada, was able to bring a match between Italy's AC Milan and Greece's Panathinaikos to Pontiac last year.

The Silverdome also has a history tied with the sport. The Detroit Express of the North American Soccer League played in the Silverdome from 1978-1980. The World Cup was also held under the inflated roof in 1994.

The venue will undergo drastic changes if a team is brought to Pontiac, however.

Preliminary plans have called for deflating the dome and installing a natural grass stadium in its place, the newspaper reported.

The bottom half of the Silverdome will be cut in half, according to the renderings.

Silverdome officials said last year the renovations would be "years down the road." Apostolopoulos bought the dome in 2009 for just $583,000 in an auction conducted under the tenure of then Emergency Financial Manager Fred Leep.

In a recent interview he did with Canadian Business, the renovations to overhaul the Silverdome and bring a major league soccer team to Pontiac are estimated at more than $50 million.

March 1, 2012
Copyright 2012 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - The Press & Guide reports that a tax credit is being sought by the owners of the Silverdome for what could be the first step in the facilities redesign for a Major League Soccer franchise.

A public hearing will be held March 15 at Pontiac City Hall for the owners of the Silverdome to present their plans in requesting the tax break before Emergency Manager Lou Schimmel and Pontiac officials.

A website for fans of professional soccer, Motor City Supporters Group, leaked two drawings of a redesign for the Silverdome to support a soccer team on its website in October.

The changes include deflating the dome and installing a natural grass stadium in its place. The bottom will be cut in half.

Officials for the entertainment venue have confirmed Canadian owner Andreas Apostolopoulos is working to bring a soccer team to the venue.

Apostolopoulos, who is originally from Greece, is a multimillionaire, owning properties throughout Canada.

He bought the Silverdome in 2009 for $583,000 at an auction and is reported to have spent $6 million to bring the stadium into working order since buying it.

Schimmel, the emergency manager, wouldn't comment on the project, saying he is waiting to get full details at the public hearing and wants residents and local officials to attend.

The Silverdome was built for more than $55 million in 1975. It was the home of the Detroit Lions until 2002, when the franchise moved to Ford Field in Detroit.

March 15, 2012
Copyright 2012 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - The owner of the Pontiac Silverdome seeks a five-year freeze on property tax payments so the firm can afford a multimillion-dollar upgrade of the empty stadium that is still struggling 10 years after the Detroit Lions left.

The Detroit News said Toronto-based Triple Properties wants the tax abatement to help finance a proposed overhaul of the 37-year-old, 80,000-seat domed stadium, a lobbyist for the company said.

State-appointed manager Louis Schimmel, who now controls the city's public finances, said he needs be "wowed" to approve a tax break worth millions of dollars to a cash-starved city. He could squash the request on the spot or let the idea continue.

Jeremiah Mankopf, a partner in the Lansing-based lobbying firm called Michigan Governmental Strategy, who will represent the Silverdome owners at the public meeting, said he had not yet added up the estimated cost of all of the proposed renovations.

"The owners are currently losing money on the arena. They want to do the basic things so that it can host one event a week," he said. At the moment, Triple Properties is holding about one event a month, he said.

The 100 percent tax break - known as a commercial rehabilitation tax exemption - has been approved recently for projects such as adding a hotel to the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mankopf said. Auburn Hills City Council also approved it earlier this year for a developer who plans to convert a former Foodland on Joslyn Road into a small business incubator.

Triple Properties currently pays about $80,000 a year in property taxes for the Silverdome, Mankopf said. Under the tax abatement, the tax amount would not increase while the developer does major upgrades to the facility, he said.

Under the law, a tax exemption applicant must show that the completion of the renovations likely would result in new jobs and significantly boost commercial activity.

Andreas Apostolopoulos of Triple Properties bought the Silverdome in 2009 in an auction for $583,000, which is about 1 percent of its original cost. He was the sole bidder.

The new owner has a long-term vision of radically redesigning the Silverdome. Triple Properties eventually would like to deflate the domed roof and create a hole to let in sunlight. It would also like to split its interior into two levels of different-size arenas, including one that would be the home of a Major League Soccer team.

March 29, 2012
Copyright 2012 MediaVentures

Pontiac, Mich. - A request by the owners of the Pontiac Silverdome for a tax break on improvements at the stadium was denied by Pontiac's emergency manager Louis Schimmel, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The Triple Investment Group, which bought the Silverdome for the bargain basement price of $583,000, wanted the city to create a commercial rehabilitation district to do $100 million in improvements. The request would have given the group a tax abatement on property taxes at the site.

But when the group made a presentation to the city, it listed about $4.6 million in maintenance projects at the stadium.

"I do not believe that a commercial rehabilitation district should be established at this time for the purpose of regular maintenance of a facility," Schimmel said. "The public and I received no evidence that such maintenance will have a benefit to taxpayers."

The stadium, which housed the Detroit Lions until the end of the 2001 season, was put up for auction in 2009 and sold for a fraction of its $55 million construction cost.

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