Everton Football Club has held a project commencement ceremony at Bramley-Moore Dock to mark the breaking of ground in the construction of its new £500m stadium, designed by BDP Pattern.
History was made as an Everton-branded excavator made the first incision into the eastern quayside at Bramley-Moore Dock as work to develop the Club’s new 52,888 capacity waterfront home begins to gather pace.
The Club took possession of the site on Monday 26 July with construction partners Laing O’Rourke immediately working on putting in place welfare facilities for the near 1,200 construction staff that will be required during the estimated three-year build.
Everton Chairman Bill Kenwright said: “This is a momentous day. One that we have all been waiting for. To know that Evertonians and the people of this great city are together with us on this journey is a special feeling. Now that the work has commenced we can all watch our magnificent home as it comes to life. I am stating the obvious, but must reiterate that this day could not have happened without Farhad’s continued support on every level and the drive and determination of our CEO Denise, and her team.
“In a few years’ time we will, of course, be bidding the fondest farewell imaginable to our cherished home at Goodison Park. That sad day will be made easier because we know we are going to an astonishing new stadium that will bring our fans and their children - and their children’s children - the kind of joy throughout the next century that we have all shared in Liverpool 4.”
A ceremony to mark the first breaking of ground is traditional in development and forms part of the required enabling works to the eastern quayside, which will eventually become home to the Fan Plaza – an area that could welcome more than 9,000 fans on matchdays. Work is currently continuing to repair and preserve the Grade II listed dock wall, to stabilise the listed hydraulic tower, the raking of the dock floor and preparation for the demolition of existing non-listed structures. Pipework is also being laid ahead of the infilling of the dock in the autumn.
Dipesh Patel Principal and Chair of BDP Pattern, added: “We have been very lucky to have worked on amazing sporting venues around the world. But Everton is our first major UK project and therefore special; it is wonderful to see construction starting. The impact of these projects is wide ranging; the effect the new stadium will have on the regeneration of this part of the city cannot be underestimated. As well as being an amazing place to enjoy football, the new public spaces will be a significant addition to the urban fabric of the city.”
Everton’s new stadium project is recognised as the largest single-site private sector development in the country contributing an estimated £1.3bn to the UK economy, creating more than 15,000 jobs and attracting 1.4m visitors to the city of Liverpool. The Club’s new home is also estimated to see at least £255m spent through the local supply chain with £32m going into the pockets of local families working on the build. Once complete, the scheme will have acted as a catalyst for more than £650m worth of accelerated regeneration directly benefiting Peel L&P’s Liverpool Waters and the nearby Ten Streets development.