The party started in Jacksonville on May 27. The owners of the Jaguars hope that it never ends.
That Saturday night at EverBank Field, a 5,500-capacity amphitheater called Daily’s Place—the crown jewel of a $90 million renovation plan—opened its doors for the first time, hosting a concert by the Tedeschi Trucks Band.
By all accounts, the first night of the new amphitheater was a huge success, and the next phase of the project, a “flex field” indoor practice facility, is expected to be ready in early July, just two weeks before the start of Jaguars training camp.
“It’s been a long 237 days [since groundbreaking],” Jaguars president Mark Lamping told Jaguars.com shortly after Daily’s Place’s grand opening. “But at least from the initial response from the first couple of shows, it’s a really unique and a very, very popular facility.”
With Daily’s Place, the Jaguars expect to increase overall revenue for the organization and fan-traffic to the arena surrounding EverBank Field, not unlike other NFL facilities such as Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA, with its satellite shopping and entertainment center, Patriot Place.
“I didn’t know having fun was this much work,” Daily’s Place CEO Aubrey Edge told jaguars.com. “We’re having a fantastic time, and it’s really incredible. The crowd is enthusiastic and they love Daily’s Place. … It’s just a whole new level to downtown Jacksonville.”
Lamping said early feedback from concert attendees was positive, as well as from the bands, who praised the overall acoustics.
“The other thing that makes us feel very optimistic about the future is our partners at Live Nation have given us really, really high marks for a facility that just opened,” Lamping said. “Bands that have been here – whether it’s the performers or their management – have been very, very positive about their experience here.”
Last week, Georgia-based power management company, Eaton, announced the installation of a state-of-the-art lighting system for Daily’s Place. Eaton is installing its Ephesus LED sports lighting and controls system that enhances the viewing experience for spectators while reducing energy use by as much as 75 percent.
“We’re very happy with our choice in Eaton,” said Jaguars director of strategic initiatives Nik Sobic in an announcement. “We’ve compared their products to competitors in the market and feel like we’ve received excellent value regarding performance. Eaton offers solutions for sports and color-changing effect lighting, both of which are sure to complement fan and player experience at our new facility.”
Construction of the flex field began in March, with a completion target of July 10. With the frame in place, as well as the scoreboards and clocks, work began in early June on the fabric side walls. A hangar-style door will be put in place on the south side, facing the amphitheater, which can be opened to the street for various outdoor festivals.
“It will be a great spot for jog-thru’s, inclement weather,” Jaguars vice president of football operations Tom Coughlin said earlier this year. “I remember when we were here before, we had a torrential downpour for a week. We had no place to practice, so we ended up on the concrete floor at the old Memorial [Arena] over there. This will be a huge help.”
Fans will be able to view practices at the flex field, but the amphitheater, with over 20 shows booked through the fall, should remain the top attraction — other than Sunday afternoons.
Jacksonville mayor Lenny Curry told Jaguars.com that the project was a leading example of the partnership between the Jaguars and the city of Jacksonville.
“When we decide to do something in partnership, we’re going to do it and we’re going to do it well,” Curry said. “I know it’s sending a message about our city.”
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