Superdome officials discuss future of fans at Saints games

Updated: May. 29, 2020 at 8:05 AM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - The future of the fan experience for this upcoming Saints football season is becoming clearer.

Thursday, Superdome officials met to discuss how they might be able to safely let fans watch games in the Superdome.

ASM Global, the company that operates the Superdome, said during the meeting that if they don’t find ways to be creative this season, capacity could be limited to just 17.5 percent, which would be about 13,000 fans in the seats during the game. The Superdome has a capacity of over 74,000.

Vice President of ASM Global Doug Thornton went into great detail about what a socially distant experience might look like.

From a financial standpoint, Thornton says with other concerts and events at the Dome already cancelled for this year, the Saints are entitled to a certain amount of revenue. There’s a level of cost that comes with re-opening the Dome that simply won’t be reimbursed.

He acknowledged it won’t feel the same but they believe they can effectively manage with the six foot guidelines and they would operate under the phase two guideline from the White House.

“The Saints have been particularly good at using their business models to help us create a seating manifest that allows us to adhere to the six foot distancing rule but also increase the capacity,” says Thornton. “If we just took the six foot rule and applied it on its face without any sort of creativity you would bring your capacity to 17.5 percent would be about 13,000 fans in stands in the Superdome and that’s not and that’s not, we’d like to have higher. That’s not acceptable.”

Thornton says part of the plan is to put fans in pods of four, six, or eight and let groups who know each other and traveled together sit in the same suite or section.

ASM Global is calling this plan the Associated Guest Model and hope to get more info out to teams sometime in June.

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