SBD Global/January 12, 2017/Facilities

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  • Barcelona Admits Camp Nou Renovations Will Not Begin Until Summer '18

    Barcelona "admitted that the project to renovate Camp Nou is delayed, for at least a year," according to Juan Jiménez of AS. The club was expecting to begin renovations this summer by "taking down the seats in the north and south ends of the stadium." This was announced when architecture firm Nikken Sekkei was awarded the project. Barcelona CEO Óscar Grau, however, announced that "the work will begin in the summer of '18." This "had been expected due to the delay of the conversations about the new General Metropolitan Plan." For the work to begin in '18, the club will have to reach an agreement with the Barcelona City Council and the neighbors in the area, "as well as secure the necessary financing" (AS, 1/11).

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  • Chelsea Receives Green Light For $610M Redevelopment Of Stamford Bridge

    Chelsea has "been given the go-ahead to rebuild Stamford Bridge in plans that would expand the ground’s capacity to 60,000 seats," according to Paul MacInnes of the London GUARDIAN. A meeting of the planning and development committee of Hammersmith & Fulham council "unanimously approved plans submitted by the club for a new stadium" that would cost at least £500M ($610M) and could be completed in time for the '21-22 season. In a further vote, the council "agreed to revisit some concerns about the plans, including the ability to park near the ground and construction and demolition plans." Design of the new stadium "has been led by Swiss architects Herzog & De Meuron, the company responsible for Beijing’s Bird’s Nest" and Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena. Apparently inspired by Westminster Abbey, its exterior will be defined by vast arches, or “brick piers,” made of London stock brick. Chelsea currently has the "seventh biggest ground in the Premier League and the third biggest in London, behind Arsenal and West Ham" (GUARDIAN, 1/11). In London, Vaishali Bhardwaj reported it means Chelsea can "begin preparations on the new stadium, which is expected to take three years to build during which time the Blues would need to play their games at another location, most likely at Wembley Stadium." An increased capacity "will allow Chelsea to significantly boost their matchday revenue and begin to match top earners Arsenal," which brought in £101M ($123M) in figures published in the 2016 Deloitte Football Money League (EVENING STANDARD, 1/11).

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  • Former Jockey Anthony McCoy Leads Backlash Against Plan To Bulldoze Kempton

    Plans to bulldoze Kempton Park have irked many jockeys.

    Former jockey Anthony McCoy "has led criticism of the controversial plan" to sell Kempton Park for housing and to switch the King George VI Chase to Sandown Park within five years, according to Mark Souster of the LONDON TIMES. McCoy, the 20-time champion jump jockey, said that the Jockey Club’s proposal, announced Tuesday as part of a £500M ($610M) investment in racing over the next 10 years, "could have safety ramifications and that Sandown might not be able to cope with the extra fixtures because of overuse and drainage problems." McCoy: "There will be a lot of people who will be disappointed. It is terrible we will be losing a grade one jumps track and we can’t afford that." The Jockey Club "is adamant" that the plan to bulldoze Kempton, with its "evocative memories" of the deeds of Arkle, Desert Orchid and Kauto Star, to make way for up to 3,000 homes, "will help to generate the significant extra sums it feels are required over the next decade" to invest in its 14 other courses, including Sandown. Jockey Club Group CEO Simon Bazalgette said, "It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. We want to realize the huge potential we see at Sandown. We need to transform its facilities and take it to the next level, including increasing its capacity and pushing for attendance growth" (LONDON TIMES, 1/11).

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  • Millwall Continues Battle To Remain At Its Current Ground

    League One side Millwall was "granted a stay of execution on Tuesday night" in its "battle" to remain at its current ground "following an outcry over plans" which it fears could force the club to move, according to Ben Rumsby of the London TELEGRAPH. The "promotion hopefuls" have played at The Den in southeast London since '93. But the club had been "bracing" itself for a vote on Wednesday night by Lewisham Council that "would have forced them to sell the land around their stadium and risk making them homeless." However, the club announced in a statement on Tuesday that the vote had been "put back until next month." Millwall confirmed for the first time last week that it would ­consider relocating to Kent should the compulsory purchase order be approved at the end of a "years-long battle against the council’s plans to award the land -- which includes their car park and home of their community trust -- to a mysterious offshore property developer." The club and its fans had been ­"increasingly resigned" to the CPO being "rubber-stamped" only for it to be blocked by the council's own Overview & Business Scrutiny Panel. That was after "historic -- and, in some cases, ongoing -- links were ­exposed between the Labour-dominated council and the offshore ­developers in question, Renewal" (TELEGRAPH, 1/10). In London, Adam Shergold reported "this latest delay offers the club and the Millwall Community Trust another opportunity to stress the incredible damage the council's plans to sell the land to developer Renewal will have on their work in the local area." A supporter campaign "spearheaded" by the Association of Millwall Supporters has "fought the proposals" and there have been protests at recent home games. More than 27,000 people have signed an online petition against the plans. Millwall CEO Steve Kavanagh and the Community Trust said that "they have repeatedly sought meetings with the council to discuss the implications of the development on the club, but have been rebuffed" (DAILY MAIL, 1/11). The BBC reported Kavanagh said that Millwall "actively" supports regeneration of the area, but the club wants to be "involved in any scheme." Kavanagh: "We are calling for regeneration and development but we don't want to feel we are not important in this. If we are treated in such a manner that this CPO goes through and we are not at the heart of the proposed redevelopment, then we have to consider what we do" (BBC, 1/11).

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  • Rio De Janeiro Football Federation Calling For 'Urgent Action' To Save Maracanã

    Football officials in Rio de Janeiro have called on police to "take urgent action" to stop what they called "the destruction of the Maracana" after valuables were looted from the "famous old stadium," according to Andrew Downie of REUTERS. The Rio de Janeiro Football Federation said in a statement that "fire extinguishers, hoses, televisions and even a bust of Mario Filho, the journalist after whom the stadium was named, were among the items stolen." The federation said, "The worries over the present and the future of the stadium are only increasing." O Globo reported windows inside the stadium "were smashed, doors will not shut properly, and copper wiring has been stolen from walls and ceilings." The federation has "arranged to meet with the city's clubs on Jan. 17 to discuss what to do about managing the stadium," but federation President Ruben Lopes said that "more urgent action is required or that meeting will be too late." Lopes: "If there is not an immediate government intervention to stop the looting and the destruction of the Maracanã then it might not even be worth meeting on the 17th" (REUTERS, 1/10).

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