The Atlanta Falcons will be playing in a gleaming, brand-spanking new stadium when a new football season rolls around this year. However, fans will be disappointed to discover that one of it’s marquee features won’t be functional until well after the start of the season.
Mercedes-Benz Stadium will have make it’s debut on Aug. 26 when the Falcons host the Arizona Cardinals for an exhibition game. The roof will be in the closed position for that game, and remain that way for an undetermined period of time.
Mechanizing a retractable roof is a complicated, and time-consuming process that will carry over into the regular season.
The Falcons make their regular season home opener on Sept. 17, and were hoping to showcase every aspect of their new facility. That will have to wait, says CEO of Falcons parent company Steve Cannon. Mechanizing a roof takes approximately 40 days after construction has finished wrapping up.
As construction on the facility is ongoing, the 40 day mark will be well into the regular NFL season.
Exactly when the stadium’s retractable roof will be fully operational is not yet known. But as one of the headlining features of the new facility, you can be Falcons brass is anxious to get it open.