Just a few weeks out from the vote, Falcons owner Arthur Blank “feels good” about Atlanta’s Super Bowl bid.
Blank told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he’s spoken to about 20 owners around the NFL during a break from doing community service on the West Side on Friday. Atlanta’s bid to host the Super Bowl in 2019, 2020 or 2021 will be voted on at the owner’s meeting May 23-25 in Charlotte.
“I think favorably for us, not just our stadium, but the uniqueness of everything that has happened downtown over the past 16 years since we hosted it, the largest aquarium in the country, the Civil Rights museum, Centennial Olympic park and the World of Coca-Cola,” Blank said. “The list goes on and on and it’s walk-able. Which some of the Super Bowls are not. To a lot of the owners, to their fans and fans of the NFL being walk-able (is important.) Having 10,000 (hotel) rooms within a half mile of our stadium is a major plus. I feel good about this.”
There was an ice storm that marred the last Super Bowl hosted in Atlanta. Blank said there wasn’t a weather component to the team’s bid.
“I had one owner ask about it,” Blank said. “I said that was an hundred-year storm. It’s an indoor facility with a retractable roof. So, I think most people think the Southeast to be a relatively safe place for the weather.”
Blank and about 300 employees, including coach Dan Quinn, volunteered to do community service at six sites around the city.
Atlanta submitted a preliminary bid late last year for the 2019 and 2020 Super Bowls. The city’s competition remains the same as before for the 2019 game — Miami, New Orleans and Tampa — but the new Los Angeles stadium is in the mix for 2020.
Atlanta’s bid also covers the 2021 Super Bowl, which the NFL added to the process as part of the late addition of Los Angeles to the bidding.
No city will be awarded more than one of the available games.
Atlanta bid organizers believe the February 2019 Super Bowl would fit neatly with two other marquee events already awarded to the new Falcons stadium: the January 2018 College Football Playoff championship game and the April 2020 Final Four.
Staff writer Doug Roberson contributed to this article.
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