Ravens Eye Additional Upgrades at M&T Bank Stadium, Better Connection to Casino District

| January 11, 2022 | 0 Comments

The Ravens are looking to make additional improvements to M&T Bank Stadium according to an article in the Baltimore Sun. The Ravens have played at M&T Bank Stadium in the Stadium Area of South Baltimore since 1998.

The Ravens’ 30-year lease at M&T Bank Stadium expires after the 2027 season and, according to the article, the team is considering upgrades such as “additional lower-bowl premium seating” and easier access to the adjacent and developing Warner Street District. It notes the Ravens and Maryland Stadium Authority are in “early-stage discussions” about a new lease.

The Ravens completed a three-year, $120-million self-funded renovation of M&T Bank Stadium to in 2019. The improvements included new 4K ultra-high definition video displays, new escalators and elevators to the upper deck, a new sound system, upgraded kitchen facilities, a redesigned club level, and new suites. The Ravens have spent a total of approximately $220 million in stadium enhancements since 1998.

One of the new suites was a field-level suite that replaced the Baltimore’s Marching Ravens bleachers in the eastern end zone. The band was relocated to the field level. The new suite is known as the Bud Light Touchdown Club.

President Dick Cass told the Baltimore Sun, “At some of the stadiums you’re seeing boxes down on the field. We did a little bit in the last renovation and we need to find more opportunities for that.”

He also said the team is hoping to see M&T Bank Stadium link up better with the Warner Street District to the south. While Warner Street currently leads to a small parking lot and path to the stadium, Cass said “Maybe we’d put a plaza there with activities for fans.”

The team will again work with renowned stadium architecture firm Populous on renovation ideas.

The Warner Street District is a mixed-use, entertainment-focused development by CBAC, the owners of Horseshoe Casino Baltimore. It will have M&T Bank Stadium at the north end of the district and the casino at the south end.

Already under construction is a 65,000 sq. ft. Topgolf facility with a driving range and 90 hitting bays. Topgolf construction also coincides with a renovation of the waterfront park space along the Gwynns Falls trail behind the casino garage. The master plan also has a 320-room hotel built at the site of bar Game; a 30,000 sq. ft. bar called Yards Social Bar which will replace an industrial building at 1301 Warner St.; and 34,620 sq. ft. of additional retail.

The development also continues east of the stadium as Himmelrich Associates has been renovating four buildings along Ostend St. for the mixed-used Stadium Crossing project. The Stadium Square project just east of Stadium Crossing is adding apartments, offices buildings, and retail.

A future greenway connection along the Ridgely’s Cove of the Middle Branch could also connect M&T Bank Stadium to the Port Covington and Westport Developments.

The Ravens along with Baltimore-Maryland Host City Candidate are hoping M&T Bank Stadium will be selected as one of the host stadiums for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. FIFA will choose 10 cities in the United States and three in both Canada and Mexico. A total of 17 American cities, including Baltimore, are still in the running.

Baltimore-Maryland Host City Candidate has been pitching all the improvements to the stadium and surrounding areas in its bid. Fox Sports recently named Baltimore a ‘dark horse’ in the race, noting it could be the stadium used to get games close to Washington, D.C. as opposed to FedEx Field in Landover, MD.

The Orioles are underway on a project to alter the left field dimensions at Oriole Park at Camden Yards and are planning additional improvements to the stadium in the coming years. An approximately $150 million renovation will begin at Royal Farms Arena at the end of February.

Warner Street District renderings courtesy of BCT Design Group

Rendering courtesy of Topgolf

The Paramount Baltimore Rendering by Design 3 International

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Founder and Publisher of SouthBmore.com, longtime resident of South Baltimore, and a graduate of Towson University. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, father of three, amateur pizza chef, skateboarder, and "bar food" foodie. Email me at Kevin@InceptMM.com and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.