Steelers, SEA seeking settlement in Heinz Field seating dispute
After squabbling for nearly a year over who will pay to install 3,000 additional seats at Heinz Field, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the city-county Sports & Exhibition Authority are trying to reach a settlement, both sides announced Thursday.
“If we can reach something agreeable, we might have a shot at getting something done for 2014,” Mark Hart, the Steelers director of planning and development, said after a hearing before Allegheny Common Pleas Judge Joseph M. James. “It's in all our best interests.”
The announcement came after representatives of the two sides — including Steelers President Art Rooney II — argued over whether to hold a hearing in which former SEA Director Steve Leeper would testify about his interpretation of two paragraphs in the Heinz Field lease that address capital improvements.
Leeper helped negotiate terms of the lease between the SEA and Steelers. James said he would consider holding the hearing, but did not make a decision. A trial is set for Dec. 4.
The Steelers contend the SEA should pay for two-thirds of the $20 million expansion to the south end of the stadium. The SEA argues the Steelers should pay the full cost.
The Steelers sued the SEA in October after a deal to finance the expansion with a parking surcharge fell through. Heinz Field ranks 25th out of 31 NFL stadiums in capacity with about 65,000 seats.
The flap is part of a larger disagreement about upgrades at the 12-year-old stadium. The Steelers want to add a scoreboard to the north end zone and be repaid for refurbishing the stadium's audio-visual control room. The total cost of the upgrades has been estimated at about $40 million.
“I don't think we're at the stage where each of the parties can say what they're willing to do at this point,” Hart said. “Each party wants to have some good discussions.”
Adam Brandolph is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-391-0927 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- NASA head tells Pitt grads their generation will ‘walk the face of Mars’
- Fire caused $75,000 in damage to Beltzhoover playground
- From injuries to front office, Penguins’ season didn’t lack drama
- Rossi: Penguins’ best bet is on Martin
- Man fatally stabbed in Braddock Hills
- Spirit Airlines lifts fortunes of Arnold Palmer Regional Airport
- Aftershocks terrify survivors of quake in Nepal that killed 2,500
- Young defensemen make case for future with Penguins
- Rossi: Crosby, Malkin didn’t sign on for this
- High risk, reward with 1st-round quarterbacks in NFL Draft
- Crews battle 5-alarm fire at North Union industrial building