|Three Rivers Stadium|
|Home of the Pittsburgh Steelers for more than 30 years, Three Rivers Stadium was the site of many great Steeler teams. Prior to moving into Three Rivers Stadium the Steelers had played at Forbes Field and Pitt Stadium. Forbes Field was built mainly for the Pittsburgh Pirates (MLB) in 1909. The Steelers began playing at Forbes Field during their first year of inception in 1933. They played at Forbes Field along with the Pittsburgh Pirates until 1963. The team then moved into Pitt Stadium, home of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers. Both the Steelers and Pirates were dissatisfied with their homes. Like every other major metropolitan city in the late 1960's and 70's, Pittsburgh had to look to the future to maintain its Major League status. Therefore, Pittsburgh decided to build a multipurpose sports stadium. The stadium was built where the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers join to form the Ohio, thus getting its name Three Rivers Stadium. Construction began on April 25, 1968 and was not completed until July 16, 1970 because of construction delays. The cost of the stadium was $55 million, and seated 47,972 for baseball and 59,000 for football.
The Steelers played their first game at Three Rivers Stadium in September 1970 against the Houston Oilers. To convert the stadium from football to baseball, moveable seats were used. Two banks of 4,000 ground level seats between first and third base for baseball were moved and became 8,000 50 yard line seats for football. Being a multipurpose stadium, tartan turf was the playing surface until 1982 when Astroturf was installed. Three Rivers Stadium was very colorful. When it opened all five seating levels were red and yellow. In the 1990's new blue seats were installed in the lower deck. One of the stadium's most luxurious features was the Allegheny Club, which was a restaurant that accommodated 300 people for a view of the field and 400 people in the main dining area. The scoreboard was once located behind the endzone, below the second level of seating, but was relocated above the upper deck. The Steelers began to lobby for a new stadium in the late 1990's. They succeeded and moved into Heinz Field for the 2001 season. The Steelers last game at Three Rivers Stadium was on December 16, 2000. Three Rivers Stadium was demolished in February 2001.
On a chilling Saturday morning, Pittsburgh fans, and fans from around the country with memories of Three Rivers Stadium, crowded around the north shore of the city, on the golden triangle in parking garages, in Point Park, and on the streets. This would be the last hours that Three Rivers would stand. The Immaculate Reception, the World Series, the Championship games, the excitement...all the great events that took place in the stadium were being remembered. Fans waited in the bitter cold to watch the place where all these great memories took place fall to the ground. Even fans from Cleveland, Pittsburgh's all time biggest football rival, showed up to remember the amazing Browns-Steelers rivalry that was battled out on the turf of Three Rivers.
The countdown hit zero and the explosives were set off, and Three Rivers Stadium finally became history as it fell to the ground. Smoke spread throughout the city as Three Rivers rested as rubble on the north shore, where PNC Park and Heinz Field would take over.
In seconds, one of the most storied stadiums in the country was reduced to pieces of rock and metal. The points of the field where Franco Harris caught the Immaculate reception, where Roberto's 3000th hit smacked the outfield wall, where championships were won, would soon just be parking lot. The thiry year life of the rugged home of the Buccos and the Steelers ended on February 11, 2001. But the memories will never die.