THE Washington Commanders have called FedEx Field home since 1997.
But a bold plan in 2016 aimed to end their time at the $250 million stadium.
Then, under the direction of Daniel Snyder, he hired the Danish architectural firm Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), which gave him a new look at what an NFL stadium could be.
Described by the Washington Post As a “transparent hyperbolic-paraboloid stadium,” the designs were radical.
The stadium was a twist on the traditional bowl, with no roof and two 8,000-square-foot jumbotrons at either end – somewhat reminiscent of Arrowhead Stadium in Missouri, which the Kansas City Chiefs call home.
The gold mesh-clad stadium would be built “at the base of a tiered, grass-covered drive-in amphitheater,” with the intention of making tailgating more of a picnic experience, it says Architects.
Surrounding the stadium was a mound of earth with bridges connecting the building to the grass field.
The lawn would have been reinforced to allow parking while maintaining the natural atmosphere.
The idea was for the moat to replace the traditional fence to direct fans to the entrances, while also functioning “as a wave pool and lazy river and, in the winter, as an ice rink.”
Images also showed the natural bowl surrounding the stadium as a potential location for outdoor performances in front of the building, which was said to have seated 100,000 spectators.
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And underneath there would have been a five-story parking garage big enough for 25,000 cars.
At one point the bench would have suddenly collapsed to make room for the facade of a buried team museum, headquarters and all of the team’s training facilities.
Four training fields would have been overlooked.
“The stadium is designed for both tailgating and the game itself,” Ingels told CBS’ “60 Minutes” in 2016, via the Washington Post.
“Tailgating literally becomes a picnic in a park. It can actually make the stadium a more lively destination all year round without ruining the pitch for the football game.”
Unfortunately, their impressive design never went beyond a small model and a series of eye-catching displays.
Snyder reportedly sold the team to the Harris Group in July for $6.05 billion ESPN.
The commanders remain at home at FedEx Field.