FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – With changes sweeping through the New England Revolution's playing staff during the offseason and sparking anticipation for the upcoming campaign, it seems only fair that one prominent switch on the business side has also created some buzz around Gillette Stadium.
The move to expand the seating area to both sides of the stadium has helped to increase season ticket and multi-game sales for 2011, according to Revolution chief operating officer Brian Bilello.
“Off the field, there have been a number of things that have happened that we are excited about,” Bilello said during the club's media day Wednesday. “It was a very strong offseason for us off the field. Our season tickets are already at higher numbers than they were last season before we have even kicked off. That is due to both growth in our renewal numbers and in our season ticket sales.”
One factor in the growth of the season ticket base is the move to open up horseshoe-style seating throughout the majority of the lower bowl after seating patrons primarily on the east side of the stadium for the past several seasons.
The new configuration will shorten the size of sections by 10-15 rows on all sides of the field to create a more intimate atmosphere for fans, according to Bilello.
“What it does is that it brings everybody closer to the field,” Bilello said. “From a fan perspective, it brings you closer to the field. From our perspective, it will give us more atmosphere on both sides of the stadium.”
By offering new seating options at midfield on the west side and supplying an opportunity to generate more atmosphere within the stadium, the Revs have stoked interest among potential season ticket holders, according to Bilello.
“Part of our new season ticket numbers and our renewals is about people being excited about our new seating configuration,” Bilello said. “You can grab a new season ticket and be in row two, row three or row one on the west side of the stadium because those seats have never been sold before. From that perspective, I think it has been well received.”