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Cowboys Stadium is a domed stadium with a retractable roof in Arlington, Texas. It serves as the home of the National Football League's Dallas Cowboys. It replaced the partially covered Texas Stadium, which opened in 1971, and served as the Cowboys' home through the 2008 season. It was completed on May 27, 2009. The stadium seats 80,000, making it the fourth largest stadium in the NFL by seating capacity. The maximum capacity of the stadium, including standing room, is 110,000. The Party Pass (open areas) sections are behind seats in each end zone and on a series of six elevated platforms connected by stairways.
The stadium is the largest domed stadium in the world, has the world's largest column-free interior and the largest high definition video screen which hangs from 20 yard line to 20 yard line. The facility can also be used for a variety of other activities outside of its main purpose (professional football) such as concerts, basketball games, boxing matches, college football and high school football contests, soccer matches, and motocross races.
Cowboys Stadium was designed by the Dallas-based architectural firm HKS. Besides the Cowboys, the new stadium will be used by college football teams and other organizations for other sporting and non-sporting events. On March 10, 2008, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, joined by officials and coaches from Texas A&M University and the University of Arkansas (Jones' alma mater), announced that the two schools would renew their rivalry with annual games at the stadium, beginning October 3, 2009. In addition, the Cotton Bowl Classic was moved to the stadium beginning in 2010.
Originally estimated to cost $650 million, the stadium's current construction cost was $1.15 billion, making it one of the most expensive sports venues ever built. To aid Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones in paying the construction costs of the new stadium, Arlington voters approved the increase of the city's sales tax by 0.5 percent, the hotel occupancy tax by 2 percent, and car rental tax by 5 percent. The City of Arlington provided over $325 million (including interest) in bonds as funding, and Jones covered any cost overruns. Also, the NFL provided the Cowboys with an additional $150 million loan, as per their policy for facilitating financing for the construction of new stadiums.
A pair of nearly 300 ft (91 m)-tall arches spans the length of the stadium dome, anchored to the ground at each end. The new stadium also includes "more than 3,000 Sony LCD displays throughout the luxury suites, concourses, concession areas and more, offering fans viewing options that extend beyond the action on the field," and a center-hung video display board that is the largest high-definition television screen in the world. Glass doors, allowing each end zone to be opened, were designed and constructed by Dallas-based Haley-Greer glass systems.
The retractable roof was designed by structural engineering firm Walter P Moore and the systems were implemented by mechanization consultants Uni-Systems. These Kinetic Architecture fundamentals will be employed in order to create quick conversions of the facility to accommodate a variety of events. When the design was officially unveiled on December 12, 2006, it showed that, from inside the stadium, the roof (membrane installed by K Post Company of Dallas) will look very similar to the Texas Stadium roof, with its trademark hole. However, it can be covered by the retractable roof panel to protect against the elements.
A Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame is planned for the Hall of Fame level. The drawings also include a site for a large sculpture northeast of the stadium, close to Randol Mill Road.
NFL, College football, Big 12 Championship Game, Cotton Bowl Classic, Cowboys Classic, Southwest Classic, Basketball, Art Program at Dallas Cowboys Stadium