World Cup renovation will impact ‘a couple thousand’ seats at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium

GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium
Posted at 3:08 PM, Jul 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-25 16:08:43-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Renovations are coming in three years to GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium to accommodate the 2026 FIFA World Cup, but Kansas City Chiefs fans needn’t worry about its impact on seating for NFL games.

Several rows on the northeast side of Arrowhead Stadium, which is closest to Kauffman Stadium, will be removed to create enough space for a World Cup soccer field, according to Chiefs President Mark Donovan.

Seats also will have to be removed in corners along the opposite sideline.

The Chiefs will begin renovations during the spring of 2025 after completion of the 2024 NFL season. The seats will be moved back into place ahead of the 2025 NFL season then removed again the following spring ahead of the World Cup, according to Donovan.

“We’ve mapped out a plan where we can actually do some of the work, put seats back in, take the seats back out, play the games and at the end of the games put the seats back in,” Donovan said. “Our goal at this point is to make sure that every single seat is replaced for every single season, so we’re not losing a single seat.”

He noted that several thousand seats will be impacted, though final plans are subject to FIFA approval after a site visit next month and could be subject to change.

Donovan said Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt insisted that the renovation be done that way to avoid displacing Chiefs season ticket members who otherwise would have been forced to relocate.

Donovan said FIFA is “pushing us aggressively to reduce the number of seats that we take out” and acknowledged the enormity of the challenge, but he said it’s worth it.

“The World Cup puts Kansas City on a map it's never been on before,” Donovan said.

Donovan said the renovation process to accommodate the World Cup is a separate discussion from the future of Arrowhead, which was last renovated in 2019 to put new seats and amenities in the upper deck.

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The Royals have signaled strong interest in building a new downtown ballpark and the Chiefs also are weighing options for new digs.

The timing of the World Cup and uncertainty regarding the Royals’ future at Kauffman Stadium, which shares the Chiefs’ parking lot at the Harry S. Truman Sports Complex, also will factor into discussions about Arrowhead Stadium’s future.