An artist's rendering shows what the Bay Area hopes is enough to bring Super Bowl L to Santa Clara in 2016. The 49ers' $1.2 billion stadium is set to open for the 2014 season. Associated Press file, 2010

State of the art stadium centerpiece of Bay Area's bid for Super Bowl L

Published: Monday, May. 20, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 1C
Last Modified: Monday, May. 20, 2013 - 8:55 am

SANTA CLARA – South Florida's pitch to host Super Bowl L was mailed in a three-inch-thick plastic binder to NFL owners two weeks ago.

The Bay Area's bid arrived in a more modern package.

Every owner was sent a white acrylic case with the Super Bowl logo and the owner's name etched on the outside. Inside the case was a white iPad mini that automatically played a presentation featuring San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, 49ers CEO Jed York and Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt.

The underlying theme was technology, which the Bay Area's Super Bowl bid committee says is symbolized by the 49ers' new, $1.2 billion stadium in Santa Clara.

"Fans will be able to go cashless, ticketless, order everything from their seats. We'll have WiFi for all 75,000 people," said bid committee chairman Daniel Lurie. "It's the next-generation stadium. So that's a huge component."

On Tuesday, Lurie will give a 15-minute presentation to owners at the NFL meeting in Boston before the owners vote. The Bay Area is competing against South Florida to host Super Bowl L in 2016.

Whichever region loses on that bid will immediately be pitted against Houston for the right to host Super Bowl LI in 2017.

The 50th game holds the most prestige, though, and it's the one the Bay Area group badly wants to land. Super Bowl L will be an acknowledgment of the game's – and the NFL's – success over the past five decades.

The owners know what they'd be getting with South Florida. The region has hosted 10 Super Bowls, and the weather is reliably pleasant in early February.

Its glaring disadvantage, however, is 26-year-old Sun Life Stadium, which the NFL said needed to be renovated before another Super Bowl could be played there.

A bid to secure public funding for those upgrades recently died in the Florida legislature, and Dolphins billionaire owner Stephen Ross thus far has been unwilling to pay for the entire $350 million renovation.

In contrast, the 49ers soon will have the league's newest stadium, scheduled to open next summer.

The Bay Area's bid also is unique in what it promises to give back to the region.

Lurie, head of Tipping Point, an antipoverty philanthropy clearinghouse, has pledged that 25 percent of the money raised in advance of the game would go toward environmental efforts and needy youth.

The goal, Lurie said, is $40 million. So far, area companies, including Google, Yahoo, Apple, Intel and Hewlett-Packard, have raised $30 million.

"That was a surprise to probably all of us," Lurie said. "We were hoping for half of that walking in on May 21st."

Read Matthew Barrows' blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers and listen for his reports Tuesdays on ESPN Radio 1320. Follow him on Twitter @mattbarrows.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Read more articles by Matthew Barrows



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