The great Shea Stadium has seen some great moments. One such moment was in August 1965, when 55,000 screaming fans were clambering over one another awaiting the Beatles’ concert at Shea. It was also home to the New York Mets, for a staggering 45 seasons! When it was built in the 60s, it was the first brand new stadium to be opened in New York City since 1923. Named after attorney William A. Shea, he is forever remembered as the man who made sure Major League Baseball would return to New York City.
The stadium, which hosted both baseball and football games, was opened in 1964. In a symbolic ceremony, Shea in fact opened the players “baptizing” the Mets players with bottles of water on the field! Shea Stadium wasn’t just any regular stadium, with 21 escalators, four restaurants, 54 restrooms and a massive scoreboard! Its circular shape allowed room for two rotating stands, which fit 10,000 people. Many years later, the Mets, or the “Miracle Mets” as they were known at one stage, played their last game in the old stadium. Over the course of 2009, Shea Stadium was deconstructed, and the Mets moved to the $850 million Citi Field stadium.
Civic Arena Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, USA)
Well, when you see on Google that the venue is listed with a big red banner “permanently closed”, you know that something went wrong at the Civic Arena in Pittsburgh. Formerly known as Mellon Arena, it was the home of the Pittsburgh Penguins (the city’s National Hockey League team) from 1967- 2010. Built for $22 million back in 1961, the Civic Auditorium (as it was once known) had a very unique shape and structure – so much so that it was given the nickname “The Igloo”, with its retractable roof and use of over 3,000 tons of Pittsburgh steel.
Now that’s an advertisement for the steel company! With its classic dome shape, it wasn’t without its problems – the engineering clearly wasn’t spot on, as the cost and repairs to hydraulic jacks didn’t quite justify it being opened fully every time. After 1995, retractions were halted, with the roof permanent closed after 2001. The historic hockey venue saw its end in 2012 after various groups declined to give the venue historic status. In its place? Well, existing parking lots were expanded over the site. Pretty sad tbh. But it seems that the Penguins still have the rights to redevelop the property – but since 2014 we haven’t heard anything!
Amphitheatre of Pompeii (Pompeii, Italy)
Okay, history nerds, it’s your time to shine! (Okay we’re taking back the fact we called you nerds… we kinda need your help for some fact-checking here). The oldest surviving Roman amphitheater, this “stadium” was long abandoned because well, Vesuvius. Yep, the massive volcano erupted in 79 AD, and along with covering the amphitheater, buried Pompeii and Herculaneum with it!
It famously held gladiatorial events and games, but after one particularly deadly brawl between Pompeiians and Nucerians, there was a 10-year ban on the events! These days, it is now a historical landmark and object which archaeologists fawn over. Fun fact: Pink Floyd made a concert film at the amphitheater, which was the first public performance held there since 79 A.D.! Shine on, you crazy diamond!
Boothferry Park (Hull, England)
Alright, we’re not going to beat around the bush with this one – Boothferry Park wasn’t exactly state of the art. It wasn’t a state of the anything, apart from well, a state. Formerly the home ground of Hull City A.F.C (between 1946 and 2002 to be exact), Boothferry was more about character than looks. It’s about personality folks!
Holding an intimate crowd of 16,000, it was, in fact, something of a landmark for Hull, particularly the light towers which reached up into the sky. From the colorless stadium to the light grey, gloomy skies which England is so well known for (don’t scoff Brits, you know it!), you could say they were going for a minimalist look. After Hull City’s departure to the Kingston Communications Stadium in 2002, well, it seems that Boothferry Park was left behind. As a football stadium, the venue closed in 2002, before being taken over by a supermarket. But even the supermarket tenants couldn’t keep people coming back. So, in 2011, Boothferry Park’s demolition was complete.
Green Point Stadium (Cape Town, South Africa)
Cape Town is arguably one of the most beautiful cities in the world and has hosted large-scale international events. Just like the FIFA World Cup back in 2010! Built for the World Cup, it also became the home of Premier Soccer League clubs Ajax Cape Town and Cape Town City. But that stadium is known as the Cape Town Stadium. We’re going back a little further, to when it was known as Green Point Stadium. The 18,000-seater stadium replaced part of the Metropolitan Golf Club.
The multi-purpose stadium was used for soccer, (football for you fans!) as well as concerts. And big concerts at that, with stars such as: Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Def Leppard, U2, and many more gracing the stage! Just before the World Cup, the stadium was demolished to make room for the stadium which sits there proudly today: the Cape Town Stadium. Out with the old and in with the new!