Falcons' new $1.5 billion stadium has a leaking roof

Mercedes-Benz Stadium is an architectural marvel, an astonishing achievement in design that will set the standard for stadiums worldwide for decades to come. Unfortunately, it’s not quite perfect … which is a problem when you’ve spent $1.5 billion on the joint.

Fierce storms rolled through Atlanta last weekend, and according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, a high school band playing inside the stadium was surprised to see raindrops falling around them. Rain fell in about a five-square-foot area near the 50-yard line, which could pose a bit of a problem during a game.

The leak was the latest in a series of frustrating delays and issues surrounding the stadium’s landmark roof. Made up of eight triangular petals that slide on tracks to open and close the roof in an iris formation, the roof was at the center of delays that pushed the stadium’s opening date from March to August.

The Falcons’ stadium is a bit leaky. (Getty)

“The severe weather conditions and on-going construction led to a few leaks around various parts of the stadium, which is common,” a Mercedes-Benz Stadium spokesperson told the AJC in a statement. “All areas were addressed and had no impact on events in the building.”

Photos from the event show umbrellas and tarps around a small section of the high school band:

Rain at Mercedes-Benz. (Via AJC)

The roof has been open for two events, an Atlanta United game and the Falcons’ regular-season victory over the Packers. The experience with the roof open is completely different than with the petals closed; the air and temperature give the feel of an outdoor game, and it’s easy to see why the Falcons are so adamant about having both open- and closed-roof experiences available. But clearly, the roof isn’t quite operating at its potential just yet … which means it and the 2017 Falcons have something in common.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION, on sale now at Amazon or wherever books are sold. Contact him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.

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