When it opened in 1965 as the world's first domed stadium, the Houston Astrodome was considered "The Eighth Wonder of the World." Today, Houston again sets the pace with the 69,500-seat Reliant Stadium.
NRG stadium (formally Reliant Stadium), home to the National Football League’s Houston Texans since the team made its debut in August 2002, improved on the Astrodome in two areas: First, it’s most notable feature is Birdair’s retractable translucent fabric roof, the first in the NFL. This four-acre roofing structure, constructed using 403,800 square feet of PTFE architectural fabric membrane and two 967-foot long steel supertrusses supported by four reinforced concrete columns, can open or close in under 10 minutes, providing flexibility for Texas’ seasonably hot temperatures. Second, because of PTFE membrane’s inherent daylighting properties, a natural grass field is grown in place, something the Astrodome could not support.
The stadium played host to Super Bowl XXXVIII in February 2004. In 2003, Reliant Stadium won the National Honor Award for Structural Engineering Excellence given by the American Council of Engineering Companies.