Everton wants to be in its new home at Bramley Moore Dock, part of Peel’s £5bn Liverpool Waters project, in time for the start of the 2023/24 Premier League season. Tony McDonough reports
Everton FC’s proposed £500m stadium in Liverpool’s north docklands will have a capacity of 52,000 with a potential to expand to 62,000.
Everton’s stadium development director, Colin Chong revealed the club’s latest plans on Thursday and they appear to be more ambitious than originally thought. Earlier this year former chief executive Robert Elstone had sought to play down expectations on the capacity.
The club wants to be in its new home at Bramley Moore Dock, part of Peel’s £5bn Liverpool Waters project, in time for the start of the 2023/24 Premier League season and it expects to submit a planning application in late 2019 following a public consultation.
Everton currently has 32,000 season ticket holders and regularly plays to crowds of 39,000 at its current home at Goodison Park. Earlier this week it said it had 10,000 people on its waiting list for season tickets.
Mr Chong said: “At this stage, it is important to stress that this is our proposed capacity and it is what we are currently working towards. The final capacity and design will be subject to further engagement and consultation.
“We believe that our approach is the right one because it is commercially and financially sustainable and will mean that, in the long term, we will be able to increase the capacity should there be a demand and requirement to do so.
“At this stage it is not possible to say if and when any capacity expansion to an absolute maximum of 62,000 would take place. That would also be subject to further design work, fan and community consultation and planning approval.”
There is still the matter of funding to be resolved. Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson has offered to loan the club £280m towards the cost of the waterfront arena which would give the city a £7m-a-year profit.
However, in recent weeks it has been suggested that Everton, with the help of its largest shareholder Farhad Moshiri, may be able to raise the investment without the help of the council.