They say that everything is bigger in Texas. For a case-in-point example, look no further than Houston's NRG Stadium, formerly Reliant Stadium. The multi-purpose, 71,000-plus seat venue encompasses nearly 2 million square feet. Only about 100,000 square feet of it is dedicated to its playing surface.
Opened in August of 2002, the facility is presently the home of the NFL's Houston Texans, the Texas Bowl (the college football postseason bowl game), the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and host of a bevy of soccer games, trade shows, concerts and other entertainment events. For instance, it was host to WWE's 2009 WrestleMania and the 2004 Super Bowl. It will once again serve as the Super Bowl host venue in 2017.
Constructed for a cost of $352 million, the facility is unique for a couple of reasons. For one, it's one of a few NFL stadiums that has a retractable roof. The roof is designed to separate and retract near the middle of the playing surface.
But it was also designed to be transparent, which is why the stadium appears lit and glowing, even when the roof is enclosed. Simply put, even when the stadium is enclosed, it's designed to look like it's outdoors - just with better creature comforts inside.
The stadium also boasts a quality fan experience, as 14,500 square foot video monitors are located in each end zone, the largest such video displays in any sports facility.
Visiting Reliant Park
Located at One Reliant Park, NRG Stadium is about 30 minutes away from George Bush Intercontinental Airport and about 15 minutes away from Houston Hobby Airport.
While parking is available for fans in and around the site, NRG Stadium is also connected to downtown Houston, a park and ride lot, Houston's Museum District and other points around the city via the METRORail public transportation system, for those who don't want to fight the traffic or worry about parking.