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slewis1952

Mercedes Benz Stadium

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Mercedes Benz Stadium was terrific. It handles the people well from size of concourses to the concession stands.The halo board is like no other. The stadium is like no other.

I do want to bring out two items they need to look at. First there were thousands in the building who arrived before the 5 o'clock gate opening. They were allowed in but not allowed to go to their seats. This created a problem since everyone had to wait on the main level until they were allowed on the escalators and down the aisles into their seats. To their credit the powers that be allowed this 10 minutes early. If the people are in the building let them walk around and see the place.

Secondly, I sit in the upper deck, 20 yard line, row 3. Once the sun went down the upper deck was very dim.The only lights that point to the field are above us and ahead of where the upper levels begin. There is no lighting above or behind us. Doesn't appear that anything can be done about it. I will say the seats are wider, the air conditioning was excellent, and the concourses were extra wide and easy to walk through. Just a few observations. 

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All the LED lights that lit up the concrete buttresses between the levels was beautiful but it was so brilliantly bright that it took away from watching the plays on the field.   Not talking about the halo board.

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To Etherdome..... my point was that we were actually sitting in the dark. If I can't see the time on my watch or I can't read players numbers in the program it is too dark. Also, I was on the 3rd row. The lights that lit the field , when I looked up, were out in front facing away from the entire upper deck. It also appeared to be the same on the other side. After going to games since the Falcons came to Atlanta, I had never seen it like this. I don't expect anything can be done but it was annoying. 

 

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That place is spectacular. I do have some complaints though.

The concourses are bigger but way more congested in a few areas.

The bathrooms already smelled like 6 month old piss and never got cleaned.

That death ray coming in from the west window is blinding. They need to put up some window tint.

The open concourse got left next door at the Georgia Dome. That was my favorite thing about the Dome.

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Can you walk the whole stadium or are you constrained to your section? Some stadiums lock you in like that. Last time I went to the GA Dome I was told to go to another section to get a shirt in my size. The clerk said it was fine. I went over there but wasn't allowed in because of where my seats were. 

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I echo the sentiments of all.. this place is a mecca for NFL football, and we are very lucky to have it as our new Falcons home.

 

Some issues I observed though:

The row numbers are all the way at the bottom of the seats (vs. there is a Falcon logo at back level), so as you are going up an aisle, it is incredibly difficult to see which row you are at.  I think they will have to either switch out the Falcon logo for the row number or paint the row number on the steps to solve this problem.

Some of the sponsor videos on the halo board are just way too bright and become an unnecessary distraction.  E.g., the SunTrust one that goes into a 'get fired up' or something video.. it starts as bright yellow and the whole freaking place is taken over by that color.  I know SunTrust may think that's a good thing, but it takes away from the experience too much and they'll need to tone that down.

There is rotating social media content on the Halo board as a default next to game video, and that's just kind of silly (nobody cares about person XYZ's twitter post or Instagram picture just because they mentioned the Falcons).  I hope in the regular season this will be some kind of 'around the NFL' with score / Fantasy Football updates.

They have bugs to work out with the interviews they were trying to do on the big screen during the game... the video and audio never synced up.

The soda refill machines are everywhere, but they don't have a water dispenser in them the way that every other normal soda dispenser does.  The water fountains are few and far between (turns out they are near elevator banks), so it's a pain to get refills for water.. which you would think they should encourage given the health and sustainability focus.  A simple solution would be to put in lots of the bottle refill stations like they have at airports.

 

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9 minutes ago, Jesus said:

Can you walk the whole stadium or are you constrained to your section? Some stadiums lock you in like that. Last time I went to the GA Dome I was told to go to another section to get a shirt in my size. The clerk said it was fine. I went over there but wasn't allowed in because of where my seats were. 

They dropped that restriction. Free reign to roam the dome.

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I agree about the social media content being a waste of space. The board also certainly does have some dominating moments where it flashes much brighter than the actual stadium lighting.

My biggest issue currently is the lack of a full scoreboard with down/distance/qtr/clock/score somewhere near the endzone areas. From the upper end zone, I feel completely disconnected from situational football, with 1st downs and 3rd downs seeming the same at times and I found myself losing track of distance.

Even with the wider concourses, there were still some serious congestion points on the way to the seats, mostly where vendor lines stretched into the pedestrian flow or where the usual morons stopped that think it's ok to stop and carry on a conversation in the dead middle of the main flow.

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The Halo board was amazing but the ads were overpowering and the twitter feed is useless IMO.  We were in 322 and it was hard to follow the down/distance from the angle of the section.  They put the scoreboard on an the "angle" and they should have been on the "sides" and "front & back" (relative to the field) since they sectioned the video feeds that way.  I know advertising pays the bills.

The wife said they need more mirrors in the ladies rooms.  Only one mirror and it is near the door. LOL

We were there for the opening and agree at least they could have let us tour the 100 section prior to 5pm.  And when they did let us go, the escalator to the 200 concourse by the Store tripped and stopped with a full load of people.  Figured that would happen when everyone was finally "let go".  We left our seats at halftime to get more food and did some more "touring" of the stadium.  Really liked the open areas to watch the game as you walk around.  The Skybridge was amazing and offers fantastic views of the city.   The 200 Skybridge had the back of the endzone section blocking some of the views of the field and instead of just seeing concrete, maybe decorate with pics, banners, etc.  

Aside from some logistic's and bug's in the system (some vendors not having food shortly after halftime and some trouble with the POS system) our overall experience was amazing!  The staff and vendors were extremely polite and helpful.

The views were pretty good from our section.  Brought my binoculars but never really needed them even from our seats. Used them a couple of times ( I blame it on old eyes!) but never really had a problem most of the time.  

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FF70 is right about the congested areas. I had two pretty serious issues with the stadium.

 

1) No Southwest gate. You have THREE gates on the east side and one on the Northwest. Our seats are in the West end zone. Our parking lot is Lot P, just on the SE of the stadium. It is an amazing 5 minute walk from Lot P to the SE gate. No complaints there. But the lack of a southwest gate means that we had to walk halfway around the stadium on the INSIDE to get to our seats. We entered security at 6 PM. We barely made it to our seats in time for kickoff at 7pm. It took over 45 minutes to wade through the crowd from the gate entrance to our seats. This is a major logistical design flaw.

 

2) There are NO water fountains or water refill stations of any kind. We looked. We asked the attendants. There is nothing. Below is from the MBS website: 

UNLIMITED SODA AND WATER
SELF-SERVICE REFILL STATIONS
First major sports facility to offer fans unlimited soda and water for $2 with access to self-service refill stations. Experience great value for the whole family on every concourse.
 

We'll, they're right about the soda part I guess. Almost every public office building, medical facility, school, and government building in the country offers a simple public drinking fountain outside of or near restroom facilities. This was obviously too much expense to spare for a $1.6 billion dollar facility.

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Halo board is awesome, I just assume that there will be more NFL content when there are other regular season games happening.

Refill stations are great, but i echo the complaint about lack of water and multiple stations ran out of ice (too many people are very wasteful of ice). 

I wasn't impressed with the food options. I fully recognize and accept how much of an insignificant minority i am, but to discover that there are actually fewer vegetarian items offered in MBS than were in the Dome was a bummer (and somewhat related, whomever decided that 'waffle fries' are so good that they are the only fries option sold should be slapped).

But overall, being able to get a decent-sized slice of pizza + a drink with free refills for $5 inside a stadium with 21st century video technology and legit wifi was nice. 

If the Falcons win, all of it is better. If the team loses, none of the rest of it matters enough to make up for the L.

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I loved the stadium almost everything was great. My only complaints were not a enough drink choices. Ice ran out by the 3rd quarter. Seats do not feel any bigger and the space between rows feels tighter than the Dome 300 level btw.

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One more thing the WiFi worked better than the Dome, but not as advertised. I was unable to stay connected which can be a bummer later on in the season. I heard there are phone charging stations in there, but never saw one. Did any of you?

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Love the place. My complaint is that the tvs in bathroom are hard to see from urinals.  Isn't that whey they are there?  And in GA dome they played the radio feed in bathroom but in MBS they played tv audio feed. I prefer the radio feed. 

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We loved a lot of what we've seen so far. The 'front porch' entrance with the bar and Jim N Nicks BBQ outside is great. We breezed in with zero wait and that was impressive. It's a quick path to Sec 307 for us at that point. We sit in row 5 and the field seems closer in the Benz than it did in the Dome. Not sure if that's accurate or not. The Halo board is impressive and can easily change the lighting instantly throughout the building.

A few negatives...no water refills as everyone has mentioned. It seems the soda water is connected but not regular water. My wife wasn't happy about that. Stairs up to the 300 level sections is one way only. Not sure why, but they're not wide enough for two people to pass at the same time and it became a constant bottleneck throughout the game.

And finally....I have an obstructed view. A railing is directly in my line of sight and covers 50 yards between the hash marks. I spoke with guest services last night and they're supposed to contact me Tuesday to see what can be done, but I'm currently on an aisle and they mentioned getting another aisle seat probably wasn't possible. Apparently it's only my exact seat in upper sections and email went out about it...but i didn't get one. The guy behind me said he did but looks like they missed it by a row. It wasn't an issue for him. But I was bobbing and weaving all night trying to see the action.

All in all, beautiful building, but a pain in the *** if I can't see the game. I'll keep an open mind about what they can do to fix it, but I'm also realizing that I might be unhappy to the point of asking for a refund....:-(

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2 hours ago, Georgiaboy04 said:

One more thing the WiFi worked better than the Dome, but not as advertised. I was unable to stay connected which can be a bummer later on in the season. I heard there are phone charging stations in there, but never saw one. Did any of you?

I was told the charging stations are on the 200 level.

26 minutes ago, notthatcool said:

Love the place. My complaint is that the tvs in bathroom are hard to see from urinals.  Isn't that whey they are there?  And in GA dome they played the radio feed in bathroom but in MBS they played tv audio feed. I prefer the radio feed. 

I wish there was a shelf above the urinals for your cup. You have to hold your cup with your teeth to take a leak.

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9 minutes ago, FalconFanSince1970 said:

I was told the charging stations are on the 200 level.

I wish there was a shelf above the urinals for your cup. You have to hold your cup with your teeth to take a leak.

Very tru about shelf. But I bet that would be a nightmare to keep clean. I had to put beer cup in mouth 

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Went through the open house and was at the game yesterday. It was nice not having to wait to enter the stadium and bathroom and food lines were a non issue. I'm in Section 125 and the stadium has a lot to offer on all levels. For some reason I couldn't connect my iPhone to the ATT network, last week I had no issues at the open house. I noticed that the brightness level was too high for the live game video board IMO. I know they will be working on the sound acoustics, but I expected a lot more out of this stadium regarding volume, presence and clarity when music was being played. Also when the announcer was speaking the acoustics were horrible and especially when videos were played with people speaking the echo was excessive. I'm basing these observations on what the sound was at the Dome. The stadium is beautiful and I'm sure they will iron out the acoustics.

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10 hours ago, FalconFanSince1970 said:

I wish there was a shelf above the urinals for your cup. You have to hold your cup with your teeth to take a leak.

As someone with a lot of experience with beer and urination, I'm not sure why you'd need two hands for that.

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Loved the stadium but the second and third levels are actually higher up since they shoved another section of suites in.  Also no overhang (probably so everyone can see the halo board which is phenomenal except for the weird light it threw on the field at times) which puts you further back.  I know some folks in the 100s got priced out when they changed some to clubs, which sucks, but we wanted to be sideline mezz in the dome but didn't want clubs.  Now we are right next to the Piedmont Club (about the 30) and I am loving it.

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7 hours ago, PK Manley said:

As someone with a lot of experience with beer and urination, I'm not sure why you'd need two hands for that.

I unzip and zip back up with two hands.  

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18 hours ago, FalconFanSince1970 said:

I was told the charging stations are on the 200 level.

I wish there was a shelf above the urinals for your cup. You have to hold your cup with your teeth to take a leak.

That's half the fun. Really shows if you deserve that drink or not.

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Just came from downtown and the ROOF IS OPEN.  I Could not get a good vantage point from above, but it is currently open!!

 

Let's keep it that way!

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