Everton took a giant step forward today as their stadium development at Bramley-Moore Dock was given the green light by a Liverpool City Council planning committee.
The Toffees had submitted revised plans for the planned 52,888-seater stadium in September of last year, the plans updated from those that were presented to Council in December of 2019.
A special Council planning meeting was convened for today to discuss the proposals for the new stadium and the Goodison Park Legacy Development, with both schemes earning unanimous approval.
After a multitude of aspects pertaining to both developments were pored over, from the economic impact to the affects on local heritage, a 200-page report recommended that the stadium, one of the key objectives for Everton owner Farhad Moshiri since he took the reins at the club in 2016, be approved.
The plans could still be called in at a national level for review, although there is confidence that they would be able to proceed past any such scrutiny.
It has long been Moshiri’s vision for Everton that they make the move away from Goodison Park, however strong the ties of tradition, if they were to not get left behind by those they seek to be among.
Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur have both moved into new stadiums in the last 15 years, Spurs only 18 months ago into the most cutting-edge sporting arena in world sport.
Chelsea and Liverpool have both undergone considerable redevelopment at their Stamford Bridge and Anfield homes while Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium home may be 19 years old now but is still more than able to match up to the needs of an elite club.
Manchester United’s Old Trafford is, arguably, the most outdated of the ‘Big Six’, but the sheer size of the stadium and history attached to it continues to mean that it generates the big bucks when it comes to corporate hospitality and hosting non-sporting events.
Goodison Park is synonymous with Everton and has been for 128 years.
But with the limited scope for development around the stadium and within the stadium itself, there has long been the acceptance that in order for the club to move forward in the modern game then they need to find a new home that will be able to fulfil the needs of the football club in the future, increasing revenue streams so that they don’t have to be so heavily reliant on Moshiri propping up the spending each season.
The Bramley Moore Dock proposals see the 52,888 capacity made up of 43,880 standard seats, 5,334 premium seats, 448 box seats, 2,968 away seats and 258 non-revenue generating seats.
History tells us that making the move to a new home that can maximise income through increased corporate offerings is a lucrative business indeed, whether it be hospitality or sponsorship.
Spurs are the most obvious and relevant example of what Everton could achieve, albeit on a slightly smaller scale