Adding 1,600 seats to Lincoln Financial Field is the biggest change the Eagles have seen to their season-ticket situation since the team opened the Linc in 2003.
"It's a puzzle. A big puzzle," said team president Don Smolenski, who spoke to a group of reporters at NovaCare as season ticketholders received an email explaining the changes entailed in the renovation, which should be complete by the end of July, Smolenski said.
The part of the puzzle that will matter most to many fans is that season ticket prices for 52 percent of the Linc's now-69,000-plus seats will increase somewhere between $10 and $25 per game. Forty-three percent will stay the same and 5 percent will go down, in the wake of what Smolenski said was an Eagles study of pricing elsewhere. He said the Birds will continue to have the lowest average ticket price in the NFC East. He did not give a reason why prices would increase for the second year in a row, other than referring to "the marketplace" as a barometer.
The new seating sections in the Northeast and Southwest corners of the stadium will connect the upper concourse. Under the reconfiguration, some people's seats are being eliminated, and they will have to choose new locations.
In addition to adding 700 seat licenses for purchase, Smolenski said the Eagles look forward to finally being able to accommodate people who want to change the location of their seats, and they hope to make at least a small dent in their 40,000-person season ticket waiting list. The Eagles formerly had 5 different pricing levels; they now will have 8. All lower-bowl seats will continue to have seat licenses.
"This is the most tickets we've made available since I've been here," said Smolenski, who came to the organization in 1998.
In a statement released by the team, Smolenski said:
"Over the years we have received a number of requests from our season ticket members to purchase seat licenses, relocate their seats, or purchase additional tickets. By adding new seats to our stadium, there are opportunities to fulfill some of these requests. Our ticket office will be managing this process over the next few months and we will be fair and flexible throughout the process.”
Smolenski said that although adding to the Linc's capacity and upgrading amenities, such as the new video scoreboards announced last week, "allows us to be in the conversation" for a future Super Bowl, the possibility of hosting that event was not the impetus for the renovations.
The league-mandated figure of 2,500 single-game tickets the Eagles offer is not expected to change.