The international break tends to be slow on the Everton news cycle, so there was welcome news today in the form of a stadium update.
Designs for the new stadium to be build on Bramley-Moore Docks were revealed to the public back in late July 2019, and since then things have gone a bit quiet. Along with the plans that were unveiled for the docks area as well as the surroundings of Goodison Park, schedules for public consultations were also announced and the results from those have now been released.
Analysis of the data shows -
96% of the 43,039 respondents want The People’s Project – the combined stadium development plan and redevelopment of the Goodison Park site - to continue.
80% non-Evertonians also support progression of the plans - a total of 2,726 non-Everton fans participated in the consultation, 24% of whom said they had no interest in football.
98% of the respondents support the design of the Club’s 52,000-seater stadium, which will form part of Peel L&P’s £5.5bn Liverpool Waters development.
92% of those who participated support for Everton’s outline design for the redevelopment of Goodison Park to give the space back to the community.
91% of responses support the proposed mix of uses and scale of development at the Club’s current home to create a community-led legacy that could include new homes, health, education, youth and business facilities.
96% of the people support the proposed reuse of historic features at Bramley-Moore Dock, including the preservation and restoration of the dock’s Hydraulic Tower.
90% of respondents support the proposed transport strategy for both matchdays and non-matchdays to and from the Docks.
This near-universal support for Everton’s plans will be a big boost for the Club as they go ahead with the next step of the process, which will be developing and submitting the planning applications for both Bramley-Moore and Goodison Park projects. This step was originally scheduled to be done by the end of 2019, so it’s looking pretty close for that milestone right now.
Club CEO Professor Denise Barrett-Baxendale said of the survey and its results -
“These results are a huge vote of confidence in our continuing plans for all aspects of The People’s Project. This is a really important milestone and having the level of support we have from the Liverpool City Region public means we can submit for planning before the end of this year with confidence.
“The opinions, ideas and observations we’ve received will be used by the project team to inform the next steps of the project - as well as being included as part of our final planning applications.
“I’d like to thank everyone that has taken part and had their say on all our plans. The results demonstrate a real understanding of the potential impact of The People’s Project. A proposed new Everton stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock will provide the football club with a platform for growth and is vital to our long-term vision. It also has the potential to deliver a £1bn boost to the city’s economy and up to 15,000 new jobs with £34m of income going to local families. In addition, The People’s Project will attract 1.4m new visitors to the city on an annual basis and deliver £237m of additional societal value.
“This will be transformational, not only for Everton Football Club but also for North Liverpool and the wider city region.”
The Mayor of Liverpool and a self-professed Blue, Joe Anderson added -
“We have been working with Everton from the start of this project and what has been clear from day one is that this stadium is not just right for the Club and their supporters, it’s a development that is right for our dilapidated docklands which sit in one of the poorest areas of the UK.
”Everton has carried out a brilliant public consultation to ensure everyone has had the opportunity to have their say on their proposals.
”Their plans for Bramley-Moore Dock and Goodison Park, alongside our regeneration ideas for Ten Streets and Walton, have the potential to deliver a huge long-lasting economic and cultural boost for our communities in North Liverpool and across the entire city by creating new opportunities, jobs and visitor appeal.”
Getting the City Council’s support could be a key factor especially with planning and funding, as Sky Sports report -
“Crucially, we understand there are a number of funding options on the table through private finance and Liverpool City Council. It is estimated the cost of the project will be around £500m.
”Private finance is the most likely route and there will be no negative impact by Brexit on the interest rate in those offers. In fact, the only way the deals could change would be to offer even more favourable rates of interest.
”Everton will confirm how they are financing the stadium once planning permission is granted.
”The planning application will now be submitted before the end of 2019. Should permission then be granted in the New Year, it’s a three year build from then, so Everton are on course to be in their new home for the 2023/24 season.”
So there, finally what looks to be a solid date for when the Toffees could be at their new fortress!