Premier League soccer club AFC Bournemouth has confirmed that the team intends to build a new stadium on a new site.
In a statement on the club’s website, AFC Bournemouth chief executive Neill Blake revealed that the club’s board of directors’ preferred option was to buy the stadium back from its current owners, Structadene, and develop a Premier League-standard stadium on the current site at Kings Park.
“However, following discussions over a number of months with both Structadene and Bournemouth Borough Council’s planning department, it has become apparent that this will not be possible,” Blake explains in the statement. “Firstly, we are not going to develop a stadium we do not own and will not be held to ransom over a price to purchase the existing site.
“And secondly, the council’s planning department has made it clear that they would not welcome a significantly bigger stadium in Kings Park, meaning we are severely constricted in what we can achieve on this site with regards to size, capacity and facilities.
“Therefore, we feel we have no other option but to find a new site and are working closely with Bournemouth Borough Council to identify a suitable location.”
The club, which was recently promoted to the top flight of English soccer, also stated that the needs and expectations of supporters were central to new stadium plans.
“It is crucial that we have a capacity that meets the ever-growing demand for tickets, that we are able to provide access for disabled supporters that meets new government guidelines, that we can improve and increase our hospitality offering and that we have a stadium that is used throughout the year by the community, and not just on matchdays,” adds Blake. “We are working tirelessly to identify a site and it is our ambition that a new stadium would be built in time for the start of the 2020/2021 season.
“The shareholders want to create a legacy of AFC Bournemouth becoming an established Premier League club in a stadium which is befitting of our status, and we believe that building a new stadium on a new site will allow us to deliver that.”
December 14, 2016