Artists Rendering of the Pontiac Stadium - 1971

Pontiac Silverdome Timeline

    1965 - Conceived at the University of Detroit by Pontiac native, Professor C. Don Davidson.
    1969 - Pontiac City officials announce a proposal to build two adjacent stadiums, one for football and one for baseball. A study of five different sites considers the location at I-75 and M-59 near Pontiac, MI as the best site for a new 80,000 seat stadium.
    1973 - Construction begins after about 100 architectural firms placed bids to design the $57 million stadium. Davidson, who had joined the firm of O’dell, Hewlett & Luckenbach in 1970 is appointed by the firm to serve as the Chief Project Designer for the Stadium when it was awarded the design contract by the city in 1972.
    1975 - December 06 - The British rock band, 'The Who' performs the very first concert, attended by 75,962 fans.
    1976 - October ....Some 70,000+ attended the final service of the Billy Graham Crusade at the one year old stadium.
    1976 - The stadium name is changed from Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium to Pontiac Silverdome.
    1978 - October 13 - NBA, Detroit Pistons first home game in the Silverdome.
    1981 - January 24, Super Bowl XVI … The San Francisco 49ers defeat the Cincinnati Bengals 26-21 in the first Super Bowl played in a northern city.
    1985 - Part of the roof collapses under heavy snow loads due to an error in the compressed air regulation.
    1987 - March 29 ….WrestleMania III - noted for a record attendance of 93,173, the largest recorded attendance for a live indoor sporting event in North America.
    1994 - Hosted World Cup playoff games for the 1994 FIFA World Soccer Cup.
    2000 - Five time Super Bowl winner, Quarterback Tom Brady makes his NFL debut in a 34-9 loss to the Lions.
    2008 - As the city of Pontiac experiences years of serious financial problems and due to high stadium maintenance costs, several unsuccessful attempts are made to sell the stadium. Several high dollar offers are rejected by the city including one from a local developer for $20 million.
    2009 - City of Pontiac is placed under financial control by the State. An incompetent Emergency Manager makes the fatal mistake of placing the stadium up for auction with no minimum bid and relaxed zoning regulations ‘for any buyer’ in order to spark development. A Canadian real estate developer submits a winning bid of US$550,000.
    2010 - April 17 …. New owners have a grand reopening of the stadium featuring the Monster Truck Show, 'Domination In The Dome'.
    2011 - 2013 …. After a lack of scheduled events and a controlled roof collapse, the Silverdome is abandoned.
    2017 - The Silverdome is condemned and cleared for demolition. On Dec. 3, after two attempts, the facility is imploded using about 900 lbs. of TNT.

Death of the Silverdome, as profiled by MMQB, Sports Illustrated

Road to Super Bowl 50
The Birth of a Dynasty and the Death of a Dome

Thirty-four years ago, the Silverdome hosted Super Bowl XVI and the 49ers began their decade of dominance. With the Detroit stadium now in ruins, let’s look back at how San Francisco began its run—complete with shadowboxing coaches, bellhop disguises and players getting 'Physical’—and the fate of the venue where it all started.   continue reading ....