'Metal Mecca' Aloha Stadium Closed Indefinitely


A 34-time host of NFL's Pro Bowl, along with numerous high school and college football contests along with AAA baseball has placed a moratorium on hosting new events. The Aloha Stadium Authority announced major events will be closed indefinitely due to Covid-related operating costs that limited revenue opportunities. University of Hawai'i Athletic Director David Matlin suggests the football program will be playing home games elsewhere in 2021. "Aloha Stadium has such a storied history and carries so many memories for generations of Hawaiian families", Matlin said. Estimated upkeep and repair costs of escalated in recent years - much of the stadium's metal construction is weathered, owing to Hawaii's ocean climate. A 2005 estimate put a $210 million cost on a refurbishment to extend the stadium's life for 20-30 years. Efforts will now be put forth to build a new primary football venue in the near future with an expected price tag of $350 million. The facility opened in 1975, one of its first tenants was a short-lived World Football League franchise. Until 2007, the stadium featured four moveable 7,000 seat sections to accommodate Hawaii Islanders baseball. Islanders attendance plummeted due to the stadium's suburban location near Pearl Harbor, the franchise moved to the mainland after the 1987 season. Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors attendance was traditionally strong but has also declined in recent years. Aloha Stadium is still scheduled for a revived Hula Bowl on Jan. 30. The venue houses weekly swap meets and high school graduations. The Hawai'i football program is considering options such as expanding an on-campus facility or existing high school venue until a new stadium is built.

 

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