There was some new information released today regarding Everton’s stadium construction at the Bramley-Moore docks. In a statement released on the club website, the club’s chief executive Robert Elstone said that the stadium would be full paid off via a 40-year lease with the Liverpool City Council.
I’m sure every Evertonian is aware of the significant announcements made by the Club at the end of March.
Since revealing we had agreed the principles of a deal with Peel for the purchase of the land at Bramley Moore Dock and an agreement with Liverpool City Council on a funding structure, the Club has received many positive comments from fans and residents across the City. I’d like to thank you all for your support so far. I’d also like to reiterate our gratitude to Liverpool Mayor, Joe Anderson, Ged Fitzgerald, Chief Executive of Liverpool City Council and their colleagues for their support in what could be a game-changer - not just for Everton, but for the City of Liverpool.
In return for that support, the City will benefit not only from an annual cash sum, that will contribute to vital local services across Liverpool, but a City-wide boost from new jobs, new businesses and wider community benefits kick-started by the developments at both Bramley Moore Dock and Goodison Park.
Elstone went on to clarify that the Council would not help out financially -
Whilst the Council is lending valuable support, it is important to stress that the Club is paying for the stadium in full. We will pay for our new home with a long-term lease, likely to be 40 years. At the end of this time, the Club will take sole ownership of the stadium.
These two big steps forward were critical for the project to progress. They give us the confidence to proceed with the next phase of our work - the work required to define, in much greater detail, what the stadium will look like and the exciting role it will play in the future aspirations of the Club. This phase of work will require substantial investment from the Club, highlighting just how committed we all are to the success of the project.
The club has asked for the fans to provide input into the stadium plans by signing up here to be informed of progress and involved in future activities and events related to the Bramley-Moore docks project.
He also added that the club would continue to work with the Council in realizing the full potential of the construction and revamping the North Docks area -
In parallel with this, we are working with the Council to define the substantial economic and social benefits that will result from both the new stadium and our plans to leave an enduring legacy at Goodison Park – something which is of paramount importance to us. A new stadium on the famous Liverpool waterfront will be a catalyst for further, substantial investment in the City. It will link to infrastructure that the City has committed to investing in, including the proposed new Cruise Liner terminal, Liverpool 2 and the Ten Streets district.
And, over recent years, through the work of Everton in the Community, we have made a substantial investment in our City and local neighbourhood, and have demonstrated, absolutely, that we care about the people that live in and visit Liverpool 4. That commitment will remain, and to back that up, Liverpool Hope University is helping us to create a longlasting legacy of jobs and economic well-being for the area.
We continue to develop thoughts and ideas for the new stadium. These thoughts will, of course, motivate our players and fans, and our priority will be to deliver a stadium that is great to play, and watch, football in.
The executive also added that the club would definitely consider fans’ opinions before making key decisions regarding the new stadium -
However, we know that there are two things that are of most interest to our fans - what it will look like, and how big it will be? Lots of progress has been made in these two areas but, before we finalise any design, we’ll be taking on board the thoughts and ideas of our fans, the community, partners and experts - as well as looking at examples of best practice from all over the world.
We have reason to be confident on capacity. As evidenced this season, Everton remains as ambitious as ever and will continue to challenge for a place in the Champions League. And, also, right now, we have 10,000 prospective Season Ticket holders waiting for the release of around 3,000 seats so we’re confident that we can fill a considerably bigger stadium. There is a lot of work still to be done, but this aspiration sits alongside our commitments to building a stadium as atmospheric and intense as Goodison Park, and to retaining our commitment to affordable pricing.
Elstone finished up by saying that the Board was fully committed to the move despite past initiatives for a new stadium falling through -
And, as our thoughts develop and consolidate, we will continue to look closely at the economics of the new stadium – how much it will cost, how it will function and how much additional revenue it might generate.
Ensuring that the new stadium makes commercial sense and securing the finance are crucial next steps. And, as you would appreciate, only when these elements are in place can we move forward.
The economics are not the only remaining challenge but the progress made in recent weeks means we are moving forward with confidence, and backing up that confidence with substantial financial commitments to the next phases of work, that are now underway. Like every Evertonian, we want this to happen and you should be assured that all of us – from the Chairman, Farhad, The Board and myself, we will do all we can to bring this unique opportunity to life. Our commitment to the project is full and resolute.