Though we’re still very early in the evaluation process, Kansas City Chiefs chairman and CEO Clark Hunt says his preference would be to renovate Arrowhead Stadium, rather than seeking a new facility.
“That would be our No. 1 priority,” Hunt told the Kansas City Star Friday. “We’re going evaluate all our options, obviously. We’ve got to figure out what’s best for the franchise, what’s best for the fan base.”
Making this sort of statement so early in the evaluation process can’t be considered an off-the-cuff statement: Hunt surely would know how folks would take this declaration. But with so much up in the air, it’s a little surprising he would go public with the sentiment.
Right now the team and consultants are evaluating options should the team stay at Arrowhead Stadium, presumably planning for a future of the Truman Sports Complex with or without Kauffman Stadium. Indications are that the Kansas City Royals are looking at a move to a new downtown ballpark with plenty of support from the local business community. With Kansas City set to host 2026 World Cup games, time is of the essence. Another complicating factor: armed with proceeds from a new sports-gambling tax, Kansas is likely to make a play for a new Chiefs stadium as well. And there is a third option as well: building a new stadium at the Truman Sports Complex.
Despite those factors, Hunt’s preference to renovate Arrowhead Stadium is clear:
“What I’ve learned through the process is it’s not a very simple answer, when you’re trying to make a decision about whether a building can go another 25 or 30 years starting eight years from now,” Hunt said. “So we’re being very methodical about it. We want to get to the right answer, because it’s very important.”…
Hunt admits he has an emotional attachment to Arrowhead, talking Friday about how his father and Chiefs founder Lamar Hunt called the stadium his favorite place on earth.
“(The decision process) starts with evaluating Arrowhead,” Clark Hunt said, “and that’s where we are right now.”
Image courtesy Kansas City Chiefs.