Commonwealth Stadium (Edmonton)

Commonwealth Stadium (Edmonton)
Commonwealth Stadium
Location 11000 Stadium Road
Edmonton, Alberta
T5J 2R7
Opened 1978
Renovated 2001
Owner City of Edmonton
Surface Grass (1978-2010)
FieldTurf artificial turf (2010-present)
Construction cost C$20.9 million
($68.5 million in 2011 dollars[1])

Renovations: C$22.17 million
($27.2 million in 2011 dollars[1])

Total cost:
C$95.7 million in 2011 dollars
Capacity 60,081
Edmonton Eskimos (CFL) (1978–present)
Edmonton Drillers (NASL) (1979–1981)
Canadian Soccer Association

Commonwealth Stadium is a sports stadium located in the Norwood Area of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, primarily used by the Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League. The stadium is owned and operated by the City of Edmonton.



Commonwealth Stadium was built for the 1978 Commonwealth Games, held in Edmonton. Initially, when Edmonton was chosen to host the games, thought was given to rebuild the existing Clarke Stadium. In January 1975, the Edmonton City Council decided to build a new over 40,000-seat stadium adjacent to Clarke Stadium.

Construction began in March 1975. Construction was completed in 1978, prior to the start of the Commonwealth Games on August 3, 1978.[2] The stadium cost $20.9-million to build, and the original capacity was approximately 42,500.[3] The stadium was expanded by about 18,000 seats to a total capacity of 60,081 for the Summer Universiade Games held in 1983. The stadium also underwent major renovations in 2001, costing $22.17 million.

On March 10, 2010, the city council approved the replacement of the grass with artificial turf. It cost $2.6 million to change the turf and was completed in May 2010 before the start of the 2010 Edmonton Eskimos season. This was the last CFL stadium to switch to artificial turf.[4][5]


The stadium has permanent seating for 60,081, but can hold more with temporary seating.[6] On September 26, 2009, the record for largest crowd to attend a regular-season Eskimos home game was set at 62,517 against the Saskatchewan Roughriders.[7] The second largest crowd in stadium history was the Grey Cup game on November 28, 2010, with 63,317 in attendance. The largest crowd was an estimated 65,000 for the U2 360° Tour concert on June 1, 2011.[8] The stadium is the second largest in permanent capacity in Canada, after Montreal's Olympic Stadium.

Panoramic view of Commonwealth Stadium


Commonwealth Stadium during a CFL game.

The stadium was, until 2010, one of the few major facilities in Canada to have a natural grass playing surface. As such, Commonwealth Stadium often played host to international soccer matches and tournaments, and is the home field for the country's national soccer teams.

Despite the completion of the soccer-specific BMO Field in Toronto, Commonwealth Stadium remains a major venue for soccer in Canada due to its capacity. Commonwealth stadium was last resodded in April 2007 in preparation for the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup. In 2010, Edmonton City Council approved the replacement of the turf with artificial turf, which was completed in May 2010.

Notable events

The stadium has hosted the 1978 Commonwealth Games, the 1983 Universiade Summer Games, the 2001 IAAF World Championships in Athletics, the final match of the inaugural FIFA U-19 Women's World Championship in 2002, and the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

The stadium was the host of the first regular-season outdoor NHL hockey game in 2003, called the Heritage Classic.

It had also been the home field for Canada's men's national soccer team until the 2007 opening of BMO Field in Toronto. It hosted an international friendly match between the Los Angeles Galaxy and Vancouver Whitecaps in May 2008, and River Plate and Everton F.C. in July 2009.

In rugby union, the stadium has hosted Churchill Cup matches and hosted some 2006 Women's Rugby World Cup matches, including the final.

The CFL Grey Cup game has been played at Commonwealth Stadium on four occasions: in 1984, 1997, 2002, and 2010.

It has also hosted many concerts, including Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Tim McGraw, The Rolling Stones, The Police, Fiction Plane, AC/DC, U2, Rage Against the Machine, Kenny Chesney, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Taylor Swift, Bon Jovi, Lilith Fair & Edgefest.

Billy Graham's 1980 Northern Canada Crusade was held here.

U2 performed at the stadium on June 1, 2011 to an estimated crowd of 65,000,[8] on their U2 360° Tour. The show was originally to be held on June 23, 2010, but had to be postponed following Bono's emergency back surgery.


View of Commonwealth Stadium, from the LRT Platform.

It is served by Stadium Station along the LRT (201) line and the Stadium Transit Centre (served by Routes 2, 120 and 127) adjacent to the LRT station.

See also



External links

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Clarke Stadium
Home of the
Edmonton Eskimos

1978 – present
Current holder
Host of the NHL Heritage Classic
Succeeded by
McMahon Stadium,
Calgary, Alberta
Preceded by
Estadio Olímpico,
Seville, Spain
Host of the IAAF World
Championships in Athletics

Succeeded by
Stade de France,
Paris, France
Preceded by
Stadionul Naţional,
Bucharest, Romania
Host of the
Summer Universiade

Succeeded by
Universiade Memorial Stadium,
Kobe, Japan
Preceded by
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum,
Home of the
Edmonton Drillers (NASL)

1979 – 1981
Succeeded by
Clarke Stadium
Preceded by
Queen Elizabeth II Park,
Christchurch, New Zealand
Host of the
Commonwealth Games

Succeeded by
Queen Elizabeth II
Jubilee Sports Centre
Brisbane, Australia

Coordinates: 53°33′35″N 113°28′34″W / 53.55972°N 113.47611°W / 53.55972; -113.47611

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