Built in the early 1920's and originally named "Municipal Grant Park Stadium," Chicago's Soldier Field for two years was the home of the USFL's Chicago Blitz, drawing one of the lowest average attendances league-wide in one of its largest population centers.

Perhaps best known today as the home of the NFL's Chicago Bears, Soldier Field actually didn't serve as the team's home until 1971 - over half a century into the team's existence.  Both prior to and after that the facility hosted a number of football-related events - the first pro team to call Soldier Field home was actually the AAFC's Chicago Rockets in 1946.  They would be followed by the NFL's Chicago Cardinals in their final season in the city (1959), the Bears of course, the WFL's Fire (1974) and Winds (1975), the Blitz in 1983 and 1984, and most recently the XFL's Chicago Enforcers in 2001.

In 2001 the Chicago Park District, which owns and maintains the stadium, announced plans to give Soldier Field virtually a complete overhaul, spending 18 months and nearly $365 million - the stadium had cost $ 10 million to build initially - to gut the old facility and replace it with a new, state of the art, 21st century stadium.  Today, what Chicagoans call "new" Soldier Field has a seating capacity of roughly 63,000 and serves not only the Chicago Bears but also concert promoters, non-profit organizations, and others who look to gather large groups of Chicagoans.

SOLDIER FIELD

Chicago, Illinois

(shown during the 2002-03 reconstruction)

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