Crystal Palace has announced ambitious plans for the redevelopment of Selhurst Park Stadium, as flagged up in last week’s UKVMA newsletter. It will increase the capacity from 26,000 to more than 34,000 at a cost of £75-£100m. The club intends to transform the match-day experience for supporters and provide new facilities for the community while retaining the ground’s uniquely passionate Premier League atmosphere.
A new five-storey main stand features an all-glass front – a homage to the club’s earliest days when it stood in the shadows of the original Crystal Palace, erected on Sydenham Hill. A central vaulted arch, with the famous Eagle crest, is a reminder of the iconic 1851 Exhibition Hall, and eagle wings flank the 41-metre structure.
Plans will be submitted to Croydon Council in January and, subject to planning permission being granted, work would begin in the next 12 months. The project is likely to take up to three years to complete. The existing Main Stand will remain in full operational use throughout the build process, minimising the impact on the stadium capacity in the coming seasons.
The club is collaborating with Croydon Council on relevant issues. It will be working with the local community, businesses and other interests, holding a series of local events to show plans and invite feedback. A formal planning application is due to be launched by the end of January 2018.
Key features of the redevelopment include:
- Capacity in the new stand will increase from around 5,400 to 13,500, with more than 10,700 General Admission seats – an increase of around 6,000 on existing numbers
- Improved facilities for supporters with disabilities and a substantial increase in wheelchair spaces, making Selhurst Park compliant with Accessible Stadia Guidelines
- A bigger pitch, increased from 101.5m x 68, to 105m x68m, making Selhurst Park compliant with UEFA regulations and eligible to host tournament football
- Premium hospitality and entertainment facilities for more than 2,500 supporters, including a new Tunnel Club, and between 16-28 boxes, which will give members a unique vantage point as the players prepare for the match and conduct post-match interviews
- A new museum, documenting the club’s rich history and its place in the South London community
- New community facilities, supplementing the work of the Palace for Life Foundation, which delivers health, education and sporting programmes for more than 13,500 local children and young adults
- Improved sightlines in the Arthur Wait Stand with the removal of the TV gantry, and improved Arthur Wait concourse
- Redevelopment of the upper Whitehorse Lane Boxes into mixed bar/box use