It wasn’t much of a surprise, but on Tuesday afternoon the NFL owners officially selected Atlanta as the host of the 53rd Super Bowl in 2019.
The event, which bring in over 100 million viewers each year, joins the 2018 college football national championship and 2020 men’s basketball Final Four as the next major sporting event to be hosted in the under-construction Mercedes-Benz Stadium downtown.
A big time get for Falcons owner Arthur Blank, who was on hand Tuesday at the vote to help pitch Atlanta as a host city. The bid, themed as “Atlanta Transformed”, promoted the new stadium as well as the re-developed surrounding area, which has transformed since the city last hosted a Super Bowl in 2000. That event, remembered not-so-fondly due to a freak ice storm, was thought by many to be Atlanta’s last opportunity to host the big game unless a new stadium was constructed. That line of thought played a role in Blank’s pursuit of a new stadium despite the Georgia Dome’s relative youth.
The Super Bowl generally brings in upward of $700 million to its host state each year between leisure purchases and tax revenue. It also allows the city to stand under the spotlight on the grandest stage on American television, a much deserved reward for city officials who have worked to bring the game back to Atlanta for the first time in nearly two decades.