In mid 1968, University of Detroit Professor C. Don Davidson, along with other area sports enthusiasts were excited at the prospects that professional sports teams, the Detroit Lions and the Tigers, were actively investigating the possibilities of a new major sports facility for Southeast Michigan. The excitement was generated by the fact that Davidson and Pontiac city leaders made a presentation to the Metropolitan Stadium Committee of a 155 acre site on the city's east side at the intersection of M-59 and I-75. The Metropolitan Stadium Committee voted unanimously for the Pontiac site. The city commission later appointed a Stadium Authority which spent the greater part of 1969 completing the necessary economic feasibility studies in constructing such a stadium. The city made the professional sports franchises aware that a stadium could be built and financed in Pontiac.
An Environmental analysis of a central business area : Pontiac, Michigan ...Authors: Bruno Leon, Karl H. Greimel, C. Don Davidson'

Artists Rendering of Pontiac Stadium

Artists Rendering of Pontiac Stadium

The Early Years - Planning and Construction ©



In the beginning stages of planning, Detroit, Pontiac and 
Walled Lake were the primary sites for a new stadium.




City to Push for Stadium
First mention of a proposed stadium, Pontiac Press - May 24, 1968
Envisioned and Designed by  Professor C. Don Davidson of the University of Detroit
and Dean of Architecture Bruno Leon, chairman of the design team.




Original plans called for a dual stadium complex for both the Detroit Tigers baseball team and the Detroit Lions. 
Plans were scrapped due to the lack of a commitment by the Tigers organization.
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Pontiac Press Article - September 12, 1968





Model of a dual stadium complex that was under consideration as a future home for the Detroit Tigers and Detroit Lions.  This proposal, minus a moving dome (later considered impractical)  would eventually become a reality and would be known as the 'Truman Sports Complex' in Kansas City. -  Date of proposal, July 1969 

Architects Sued In Contract Loss Bv The Star's Own Service 

Charles Deaton, a design architect of the Harry S. Truman Sports Complex, had filed a $10-million lawsuit charging that Kivett and Myers of Kansas City and four other architectural firms unfairly deprived him of the contract to design the Pontiac, Mich., sports stadium. 

The Colorado architect named the Pontiac Stadium Authority and the city of Pontiac as defendants, along with the architectural firms. The suit asserts that Kivett and Myers systematically denied him credit for designing the twin stadium complex in Kansas City and the firm caused him to lose the design contract on the $41-million Pontiac stadium. 

On May 17, 1973, Deaton filed suit in Connecticut against Progressive Architecture magazine, Stamford, Conn., over an article attributing the Truman Sports Complex design to Kivett and Myers rather than Deaton. Ralph Myers, a Kivett and Myers partner, said Deaton also filed a $5-million suit against Kivett and Myers and had sued other firms in connection with architectural bids on the Pontiac stadium. 

It was reported in The Times June 30, 1967, that Kivett and Myers was chosen by the sports authority in Kansas City to begin preliminary work on the K.C. 2-stadium complex design. That new account quoted Deaton, as “design architect” for the complex, as saying the stadium designs would have to be completed before it would be practical to make wind tunnel tests on the proposed rolling roof. The roof, which was to have been movable from one stadium to the other, later was deemed unfeasible. 

A year later Deaton was identified in news stories as “architectural design associate” for the Kansas City sports complex. ~ The Kansas city Star,  19 July 1974 › Page 19

The lawsuit against the city of Pontiac and the Pontiac Stadium Authority was dismissed.













4 comments:

  1. Many people who reflect on the silverdome make mention of how bad the acoustics were during concerts. Well, my friend, the Silvedome was not designed for mega rock concerts, it was specificly designed and built for 'sports'.

    No one can deny the fact that no matter where you sat in the dome, you had a great, unobstructed view of the playing field. Davidson designed it that way , with an emphasis on the fan's perspective.

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  2. amazing! built under budget, and ahead of schedule

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  3. The picture with the caption, "Model of proposed dual stadium complex with a sliding roof" is the Truman Sports Complex in KC.

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    1. Thanks for the input. At the time, I recall reading legal opinions in regards to a lawsuit that was brought forth by the Kansas City architectural firm that was trying to get the contract for the Pontiac stadium. Professor C. Don Davidson (Silverdome designer) was questioned intently on the matter by the judge who had asked Davidson what he thought was the best stadium design, to which he replied, "The Roman Colosseum."

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