After 18 weeks of NFL regular season games and three intense playoff rounds, the Kansas City Chiefs will go head-to-head with the San Francisco 49ers on February 11, marking the climax of the 2023 season.
Allegiant Stadium, unveiled in 2020, is the result of a monumental project initiated by Raiders owner Mark Davis. In a bold move, Davis orchestrated the relocation of the Raiders from their historical base in Oakland, California, to Nevada, a decision announced in 2017 that stirred mixed reactions among Bay Area fans. The state-of-the-art stadium, boasting a capacity of 65,000, is strategically positioned next to the iconic Las Vegas Strip on Al Davis Way, named after the team’s former owner and Mark Davis’ father.
Constructed at a cost of $1.9 billion, Allegiant Stadium not only adds to the allure of the local area but also contributes significantly to the economy, generating approximately $620 million annually and creating 6,000 permanent jobs in Southern Nevada. The stadium’s versatility is underscored by a movable turf field that adapts to various events, including Raiders games, concerts, and special sporting events like the Pac-12 Championship Game and the Las Vegas Bowl.
The stadium’s engineering marvel is showcased by a sliding field tray weighing 19 million pounds, equivalent to the weight of the Eiffel Tower, moved by 72 individual motors. A staggering 105,000 cubic yards of concrete, 425 trees, and 28,000 tons of structural steel were used in construction. Allegiant Stadium also features 75,000 square feet of video boards and over 2,300 televisions, ensuring fans are kept informed and entertained.
The hosting of the Super Bowl is anticipated to inject around $500 million into Las Vegas through direct spending, increased tax revenue, heightened room occupancy, and job creation.
Despite its official name, Allegiant Stadium has earned the moniker “Death Star,” a term playfully embraced by Mark Davis. While some humorously note a resemblance to a giant Roomba vacuum, Davis remains confident in the success of his “Death Star,” distinguishing it from its fictional, ill-fated namesake in Star Wars.
In addition to its state-of-the-art features, Allegiant Stadium pays tribute to Raiders legend Al Davis. A towering 92-foot torch, symbolizing Davis’ enduring vision for the team’s commitment to victory, stands prominently in the venue. Before each home game, notable figures light the torch in memory of the former owner. At the inaugural lighting in 2020, Carol Davis, Al Davis’ former wife and mother of current owner Mark, marked the occasion.
Even during the challenges posed by the Covid pandemic, the Raiders continued the tradition of torch lighting, acknowledging various community factions such as frontline medical workers, cancer survivors, stadium construction workers, law enforcement agencies, and food bank volunteers.
As Allegiant Stadium prepares to host Super Bowl LVIII, it stands not only as a remarkable sporting venue but also as a symbol of the Raiders’ rich history and commitment to excellence.