Positioned at the confluence of the Monongahela and Allegheny rivers, Three Rivers Stadium was to be a crowning jewel of Pittsburgh when it was opened in 1970.  As the home for baseball's Pirates and the NFL's Steelers, the stadium reflected the apex of the "cookie cutter" era:  a period where cities, seeking to save money in constructing sports facilities, opted to build so-called "multi-sport" facilities that could accommodate both baseball and football - and then building facilities well-suited to neither sport.

In the case of Three Rivers, despite moments of glory such as the Pirates World Series wins of 1971 and 1979 and the Steelers four NFL titles during the 1970's, the people of Pittsburgh quickly fell out of love with the place that was referred to as "The Atrocity by the Monstrosity" (the monstrosity being the Ohio River).  By the time the Maulers played their only USFL season there in 1984, Three Rivers was seen as an antiquated eyesore, and due to inadequate parking and unfriendly staff at the stadium, unless there was a very strong attraction people most likely found more reasons to stay away from Three Rivers rather than go there.  The only consistent exceptions to this seemed to be Steeler home games, Pirate home openers, and Pirate playoff games, which regularly sold out the stadium's seating capacity, which varied from 49,000 to 57,000 depending on configuration and era.

After nearly three decades and lots of political jostling, both the Pirates and Steelers were to get new stadia, and the decision was made to bring Three Rivers down via implosion.  Originally scheduled for implosion in late February 2001, the desire to blow the place up was so strong that the date was moved up two weeks, to February 11, 2001.


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


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