5 Most Expensive Sports Stadiums in the World

Sporting stadiums are more than just bricks and mortar. For many, they're places of worship, gladiatorial arenas and, in the case of some of Europe's grand old football stadiums, they are structures which have come to define a city and its skyline.

Wembley Stadium in London

However, these grand old monoliths eventually start to crumble and while an upgrade is required, state-of-the-art stadiums do not come cheap, as the below list charting the five most expensive stadiums of all-time explains.

5) Wembley Stadium, London, £1.1billiion – opened in 2007

The only soccer stadium in the top five is also the oldest, the new Wembley was the most expensive stadium ever when it opened in 2007 but the London venue was beset by construction issues which pushed the total cost north of the £1.1billion mark.

The old Wembley, which was demolished from 2002 to 2003, was best known for its iconic Twin Towers while the new stadium has become famous for the lit-up arch which stretches from one side of the 90,000-seated structure to the other.

Best known as the home of England’s national team, the stadium also hosted the 2011 and 2013 Champions League finals and the Euro 2020 final.

4) Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia, $1.6billion – opened in 2017

The first of four NFL stadiums on this list, the Mercedes-Benz stadium broke ground in 2014 and opened three years later at a total cost of $1.6bn.

The stadium has a capacity of 75,000 and features a signature retractable roof, which includes a pinwheel that consists of eight translucent, triangular panels.

Home to both the Atlanta Falcons NFL team and Atlanta United in the MLS, the Georgia venue was the scene of Super Bowl LIII in 2019, a rather drab contest in which the New England Patriots beat the LA Rams 13-3.

3) MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey, $1.7billion – opened in 2010

Shared stadia has helped high-profile sports organisations to cover the astronomical costs involved in building new venues and New York’s two NFL franchises – the Giants and the Jets – decide to partner up to build the $1.9bn MetLife.

Capable of housing 82,500 fervent New Yorkers, the ‘new Meadowlands’ venue is actually in nearby New Jersey and opened in 2010, three years after construction started.

The MetLife was the scene of Super Bowl XLVIII, where the Seattle Seahawks claimed the Lombardi Trophy in a dominant 43-8 win over Denver.

2) Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas, Nevada, $1.9billion – opened in 2020

Of four NFL stadiums on this list, the Allegiant Stadium is the only one which is yet to have the honour of hosting a Super Bowl, but the $1.9bn Las Vegas venue will host American football’s greatest show in 2024.

Construction of the world’s second-most expensive stadium began in 2017 and it opened three years later to correspond with the Oakland Raiders’ move to Nevada, becoming the Las Vegas Raiders for the 2020 NFL season.

The 65,000-capacity Allegiant is located at the bottom of the Vegas strip and is also home to the UNLV Rebels college team.

1) SoFi Stadium, Inglewood, California, $5.5billion – opened in 2020

Clocking in at number one and costing an eye-watering $5.5bn, the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, California, is a serious piece of real estate which required more cash than the Mercedes-Benz, the MetLife and the Allegiant put together.

The Inglewood venue is home to both the Los Angeles Rams and the Los Angeles Chargers NFL teams and the Rams made history on their own patch last month as they won the Super Bowl in front of a home crowd – a feat also achieved by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2021.

A winner of the American Society of Civil Engineers’ Outstanding Architectural Engineering Project of 2021, SoFI holds 70,240 spectators but its capacity can expand by 30,000 for major events.

Joe is a writer that has covered a whole range of sports for the last 10 years as a journalist and specialises in writing high-quality content on tennis and golf.
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