Katie Moore / Eyewitness News
NEW ORLEANS -- The renovation of the Louisiana Superdome has cost the taxpayers tens of millions of dollars, and after the first Saints game of the preseason, reviews are coming in about the project.
Most think it looks great, but some long-time season ticket holders aren't exactly thrilled about what the addition of new seats meant for theirs.
Long-time season ticket holder Randy Scheuermann was glad to be in that number, in the Superdome for the start of the 2011 season.
“The site of the ‘Dome is beautiful. The walk around, you have more space," Scheuermann said. "But my concern is watching the game, being comfortable watching the game and having a total view of what we had before."
But like others on the plaza level, the Superdome renovations gobbled up his seats. Scheuermann said he was told the alternate seats he chose, in section 132, would have the same sightline.
“We were literally looking down into the end zone," he said. "Now we're 10 yards out of bounds."
We heard similar stories on WWL-TV’s Facebook page.
“I am in section 111 and was on the 15 yard line last year. Now I am still in 111 but at the 5 yard line. Those seats last year were half the price of what I am paying,” David Lashouto posted.
“My seats faced the side of the end zone so, the entire game I've got to do a 45 [degree turn] on my neck and watch it,” said Warren Guidry. He already called to change the location of his season tickets after Friday’s game.
“We've gotten some phone calls from people that are sitting in the corner, that were sitting in the corner. The lower level is completely different now. It's like a brand new building,” said Mike Stanfield, vice president of ticket sales for the New Orleans Saints.
Stanfield said the Saints haven't received an onslaught of complaints, but they are reassuring ticket holders they'll be dealt with individually.
“The seats are smaller. It's all squinched in there,” said one man who was trying to get his aisle seat back. The new configuration added two people next to him.
It's a concern we also heard online and on Twitter.
"The new plaza seats are like kiddy chairs. Did they expect everyone to be 4' tall and only weigh 100 lbs?" one person tweeted.
SMG, the company responsible for the renovations and the manager of the Superdome, said the seat sizes have not changed. They were just replaced.
“It really wouldn't have mattered if I had moved seats or not. As long as I was in the dome, I think every seat is a pretty good seat,” said Elliott Forman. His tickets were in the end zone before the change, and remained in the end zone for the 2011 season.
Overall, most people seem excited about the ‘Dome's new 'do, but what's new and exciting for some, is tradition-ending for others.
SMG would not say whether they'll address any of the concerns about the seats or the reconfiguration.
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