Last month chief executive Robert Elstone revealed that building costs had increased significantly because of the complexities of building on the dock site, and today at the Everton Annual General Meeting (AGM) confirmed that the completion date was put back by a year from 2021/22 to the start of the 2022/23 season.
“We’re pushing as hard as we can to get in as early as we can.
“It has gone back a year, we need to pick up our pencils and achieve that funding because it’s important that we get in by 2022.”
Despite the delay Elstone insists significant progress has been made towards securing funding and that planning permission would be submitted later this year (quotes below via Liverpool Echo) -
“Much work, time and resource has gone into advancing the stadium project over the past 12 months.
“But, there is much still to do. And if there was one enduring message to take away from tonight it is that whilst we are fully committed, and optimistic, there are still hurdles for us to overcome. Not least, securing all the money needed for what will be a huge financial commitment with very long-term consequences.”
As far as funding goes, the Echo mentions that Elstone said the project could cost about three times what the Kirkby project - that fell through in 2009 and was expected to cost about £150m, so the Bramley Moore Docks project could be in the £450m range.
Bill Kenwright has confirmed, post #efc GM, that stadium at Bramley Moore is expected to cost £500m.— Andy Hunter (@AHunterGuardian) January 9, 2018
For perspective, Tottenham Hotspur’s new White Hart Lane facility is expected to cost nearly a billion pounds.
“We are however confident that around two-thirds of what we need will be supported by Liverpool City Council in an arrangement that generates not only a very healthy financial return for the Council, but most importantly, kick-starts a scheme that will provide significant numbers of new jobs, houses and new business.
“It is important that we thank the Mayor and his colleagues for their commitment to the project over the past 12 months.
“We will prepare and submit a planning application, and a big part of that process is our aspiration for Goodison Park, and, we will keep working on, keep updating our business plan ensuring we capitalise on all the opportunity offered by such a great location.
“We hope a year to secure funding and planning, and to conclude designs, and then three years to build, on a complex site. If all goes to plan, to be kicking-off, at BMD in August 2022. Committed? Yes. Optimistic? Yes, but still lots to do.”
During the Q&A portion of the AGM, the question was also asked if the the new stadium would be anything like West Ham United’s Olympic Stadium edifice, and Elstone insisted -
“We want that fortress, for the fans to be as close to the pitch as possible. That’s our number one priority. Our primary focus.”