Thursday, December 17, 2009

Odd Pick for England's 2018/2022 Host City List, But Surprises Await

A surprising name was included in England's list of proposed venues for their 2018/2022 World Cup bid: Home Park, Plymouth. The stadium is much smaller than most FIFA regulations require, and not exactly one of the most famous venues in England. But supporters say broad renovation plans will turn Home Park into one of the country's finest stadia.

Plymouth’s presentation to England’s World Cup Bid panel included ambitious plans to upgrade the stadium to a 46,000 “Wembley of the West”. The club is already committed to a £20 million expansion of the stadium to hold 27,000 regardless of the bid, with plans to increase the capacity to 46,000 should the bid be successful at a cost of a further £30 million.

The stadium design is by Populous, one of the world’s leading stadia-design firms, also responsible for Wembley Stadium. Of particular interest was that a representative of American firm AEG, who have built and operated MLS stadia for a few years now, joined the Plymouth delegation’s presentation to the panel, with AEG slated to operate the stadium.

An Unlikely World Cup Venue: Home Park, Plymouth
Pitch Invasion
December 16, 2009