English Premier League soccer side Tottenham Hotspur has announced that it will be future-proofing its new US$1.1bn, 62,000-seat home with the installation of a safe standing section.
With the club currently approaching the closing stages of its new north London home, which promises to be one of the most advanced sports venues in the world when it is finished in September, it not only will feature a retractable dual-pitch system but also a revolutionary new rail seating system.
The news comes before MPs debate in the UK parliament the issue of safe standing at English stadia following a petition with over 112,000 signatures urging the government to change the all-seat law that has been in place since 1989.
The plans put forward by Tottenham FC anticipate the looming law change and state that it will introduce “a purpose-designed ‘safe seating’ concept whereby safety and spectator comfort are given equal precedence, using the same moulded seats as in the rest of the general admission areas”.
The single-tier capacity South Stand has been identified as a location for the safe seating section, with a portion of its 17,500 capacity making way for the fold-up seats – an area that suffered from persistent standers at its old White Hart Lane ground.
While safe standing is already in use in stadia in Europe and the USA, what makes Tottenham’s design different is that it features the same molded seats as the rest of the stadium, rather than basic offerings, and will include a lock to allow it to be stowed.
“At our new stadium, we have designed a section within the home area and within the away section that has an integrated safety bar with the normal seating,” said Donna-Maria Cullen, Tottenham’s executive director, in a report by newspaper The Telegraph.
“Fans have bought season tickets for the home area in the knowledge that, should the law change, this would be our standing area – it was one of the first areas to sell out.”
June 27, 2018