Cape Town - Liverpool are planning to expand the Anfield
Road stand by 7 000 seats, which would raise the grounds' capacity to 61 000.
The club has been looking into the possibility of expanding
Anfield's capacity at the Anfield Road end of the stadium for several years and
have announced they have opened a "first-stage public consultation
exercise to share early ideas for the proposed expansion" where they will
"listen to the views from the local community, local businesses,
supporters and key stakeholders".
Existing planning permission, which had proposed an increase
of 4 800, has been allowed to lapse and a new, larger proposal looks set to be
formally submitted next spring after two phases of public consultation.
The PA news agency reports the work will cost in the region
of £60 million and, unlike the main stand refurbishment which was paid for
through a £115 million loan secured by owners Fenway Sports Group, the money
for this project will come from refinancing at a local level.
There is no timescale as yet for the completion of the new
stand, which will have small hospitality capacity, with the majority of seats
outlined for general admission tickets, and no further development is being
considered at this time.
The new plans are on the footprint of the old planning application,
but a redesign has allowed an increased capacity. The work will mean the
partial closure of Anfield Road outside the stadium.
Liverpool's chief operating officer Andy Hughes told PA:
"They are draft numbers at this stage and there is still a lot of work to
do but it would take the overall capacity of Anfield up to 61,000. We are
currently just over 54,000. There is a limited amount of room behind Anfield
Road at the moment so there is a short section of road which we will need to
"The overall footprint of the build and the overall
height is very similar to the original planning application and that also
included a partial closure of Anfield Road. There is a limited amount of space
if you look at the constraints of the site and the Anfield stadium itself and
we have spent a long period of time trying to figure out the best design and
how we could get more capacity into the stand."
As part of the initial public consultation process, the club
has announced drop-in events, which are open to supporters, local residents,
businesses, community groups and members of the public, on Friday, Monday and
Liverpool, who are eight points clear at the top of the
Premier League, host Brighton at Anfield on Saturday.
- TeamTalk Media