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2 Kansas City firms describe what it was like to design Allegiant Stadium

David Manica and Lanson Nichols
Posted at 5:30 PM, Feb 02, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City Chiefs fans are used to GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium as the backdrop for games, but for those going to Las Vegas and Super Bowl LVIII, they're in for a real treat.

Andrew Ruhl is a Chiefs fan who lives in Las Vegas, and drives by it every day.

"You can’t help but notice it it’s right there," Ruhl said.

Andrew Ruhl is a Chiefs fan in Las Vegas

He's been able to see his favorite team play in his city under a roof that, he said, feels like a spaceship.

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"Even though I love to rag on the Raiders, it really is a beautiful history of the Raiders, lot of beautiful murals and artwork," Ruhl said.

Two Kansas City architecture firms had a hand in making the stadium happen: MANICA Architecture and HNTB.

David Manica, President and founder of MANICA Architecture

"We were inspired by like luxury sport car designs like Maserati's and Lamborghini's," said David Manica, the president and
founder.

Manica said the Allegiant Stadium reflects the spirit of Las Vegas and off of its action.

"It has that feeling of motion and sleekness, and speed," he said. "I know that everyone who travels here to watch the Chiefs is gonna feel that."

Lanson Nichols at KC's HNTB has felt it.

Lanson Nichols, Senior VP of Sports Architecture at HNTB

"I noticed it was the first time that they had turned on the exterior lights, the white lines, the racing stripes, and I just stood there for a really long time thinking, 'This is cool,'" Nichols said.

As the senior vice president of Sports Architecture, he and his team was involved in the stadium's design process as well.

"It’s a very intimate stadium. The general trend in the NFL is to reduce the seat count, so everything’s very close to the field, very close to the action," Nichols said. "There’s nothing like that kind of energy and excitement."

It's that excitement that creates memories for spectators.

"It’s kinda a privilege and honor to to be involved in something that people will carry with them for the rest of their lives," Nichols said.

Ruhl's best memory is seeing the Chiefs, Raiders game with his Dad in Vegas.

"He’s been a Chiefs fan his whole life, and I can’t tell you how much it meant to him to live through this period of this Chiefs history," Ruhl said.

It's no Arrowhead, he said, but it is a perfect spot for another Super Bowl win.

"Looking forward to another Super Bowl win, and afterwards it’s gonna be a party," Ruhl said.