February 24 – On Merseyside, Everton are flying high. Following their first derby win in 22 years at Anfield against arch rivals Liverpool, the club’s plans for a 52,000-seat stadium were unanimously approved by the local city council.
The club said the Bramley-Moore Dock site will be a “world-class addition” to the city’s waterfront and hopes to host games there in 2024. In 2019, Everton unveiled its designs for the stadium, under the heading The People’s Project. The £500 million plans will now go to the government a final approval. Everton claims that the construction of the new stadium will create 15,000 jobs.
Historic England had objected to the new stadium on Bramley-Moore Dock saying it could harm the city’s heritage but that argument was dismissed. Liverpool’s waterfront is on the Unesco World Heritage list, preventing tall buildings and skyscrapers from being build.
Everton have long searched for a new ground, having played at their historic Goodison Park stadium since 1892. That site would to be converted to “high-quality, affordable housing, a health centre, retail and leisure spaces and a youth enterprise zone” for the local community.
In a statement club president Bill Kenwright said: “Whilst today is just one more step in our long journey, it is a very important one. It’s been a good week for Everton and Evertonians.”
The current funding model for the stadium would see the local council borrow £280 million at a low interest rate from the government and then pass that loan on to the club at a profit to the city of around £7 million a year over 25 years. Everton would finance a further £200 million through alternative sources.
Contact the writer of this story, Samindra Kunti, at moc.l1618094158labto1618094158ofdlr1618094158owedi1618094158sni@o1618094158fni1618094158