With a legendary history
that includes five Super Bowl Champion teams and Hall of Fame players
including Joe Montana, Jerry Rice and Steve Young; Candlestick Park was
the home to some of the greatest teams in NFL history. Originally built for the San Francisco Giants (MLB), Candlestick Park
was the home of the 49ers for over four decades. Talk of building a
stadium in the San Francisco area began in 1954, when mayor
George Christopher promised to build a stadium if a major league
team would move to the area. Later in the year, a $5 million bond
was issued to build a new stadium. Along with the Brooklyn Dodgers (MLB),
the New York Giants (MLB) decided to move to the west coast after
the 1957 season. The Giants moved to San Francisco, while the
Dodgers moved to Los Angeles.
Two locations for a new stadium in San Francisco were discussed.
One in downtown, and one at Candlestick Point. The site at
Candlestick Point, located near the San Francisco Bay, was
chosen because of its lower price and affordability.
Construction of the stadium began in August 1958. However,
immediately after construction began, several problems arose.
Neighbors complained about numerous things, grand juries
investigated irregular funding in the stadium, seat installation
was delayed because of a teamster strike, and the stadium was
called a "fire trap." Nevertheless, the stadium was completed.
The stadium was named Candlestick Park, after its location. The
Giants played the first game ever at Candlestick Park on April
20, 1961. In September 2004, Candlestick Park was renamed
Monster Park, after Monster Cable Products Inc. purchased the
naming rights for four years. The stadium's named reverted back
to Candlestick Park in March 2008 after the
stadium naming rights deal with Monster Cable Products expired. A city ballot measure
restricted the team from pursuing the highest bidder for the right
to name the stadium.
When it first opened,
Candlestick Park had around
45,000 seats. While the Giants were playing at
Candlestick Park, the
49ers were playing at Kezar Stadium. The 49ers had played at Kezar
Stadium since 1946. After only several years of existence,
Candlestick Park began to deteriorate. At one point, the mayor of
San Francisco proposed that a new $50 million stadium be built in
the downtown area, but his idea was dropped. After the city
decided to spend $16.1 million in 1971 towards improving and making the stadium
more multipurpose, the San Francisco 49ers (NFL) decided to move
there. Candlestick Park was enclosed, increasing the seating capacity to
61,000. Retractable seats were added in right field to allow the
conversion to a football field, and the grass field was replaced
by Astroturf. The
49ers played their first game at Candlestick
Park on October 10, 1971.
Very few changes have taken place since 1971 at Candlestick Park.
In 1979, the
Astroturf was replaced by grass.
In 1995, Candlestick
Park was renamed 3 Com Park after 3
bought the naming
rights. After the 1999 MLB season, the San Francisco Giants moved
into AT&T Park, leaving the 49ers as Candlestick Park's primary tenant.
The 2013 season
marked the 49ers last
at Candlestick Park before they moved into their new stadium,
Levi's Stadium, in
Santa Clara in 2014. The 49ers played their last game at
Candlestick Park on December 23, 2013 against the Atlanta
Falcons. The stadium will be demolished in Winter 2015 and the site will be used for a mall and