Venue News: FIFA Steps Up Monitoring of World Cup Venue Construction in Brazil; A Closer Look at Naming-Rights Deals

Compiled by Karen Hogan, Associate Editor, Sports Video Group

With the World Cup less than a year away, FIFA is pledging to increase its monitoring of stadium construction in Brazil. Secretary General Jerome Valcke said Friday that with preparations entering the final stages, the focus will be on making sure Brazil can have all 12 stadiums ready for the June 2014 kickoff of soccer’s showcase event. There were several stadium delays for the Confederations Cup earlier this year and FIFA has made it clear that it will not tolerate the same problems again. Brazil has to deliver the final six World Cup venues by the end of the year…

…Corporate names are plastered on so many sports stadiums that fans have to scratch hard to find a building that lacks one. Airlines, banks, energy providers and technology companies are among the most willing to spend millions of dollars a year to get their names in front of fans. The Dallas Cowboys, along with the Yankees, the Red Sox and the Cubs, were some of the most prominent teams without a naming rights partner. That changed last week when the Cowboys said that their home field would become AT&T Stadium. The New York Times takes a look at naming-rights deals across MLB, NFL, and NBA…

……The University of Washington says the renovated Husky Stadium should be ready for its grand opening Aug. 31 when the Dawgs host Boise State.

There are a lot of new features. The running track is gone, the field is lowered, and the stands are much closer to the sidelines and end zones for a more intimate football setting.

 The $250 million renovation started in November of 2011…

…Minnesota Vikings stadium planners are identifying and starting to address environmental issues before construction begins. The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority on Thursday published hundreds of pages of data and analysis. The environmental impact statement notes soil contamination that will be studied further and mitigated as needed. The stadium will be built where the Metrodome now stands in an area that once housed significant industrial operations…

…A hard-hat tour of New Orleans Arena reveals a mangled mess of steel cropping up from the floor like the offspring of some metallic Medusa. It is part of the new Chairman’s Club, one of two premium lounges at event level now under construction, and a portion of a two-year, publicly funded $50 million renovation to bring the 14-year-old arena up to speed with newer buildings. The rebranded New Orleans Pelicans are the driving force behind the overhaul, a team reclaiming its regional identity in the Gulf Coast after Saints owner Tom Benson bought the Hornets from the NBA in 2012.

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