Tuesday, May 3 – 2016
Barca looking to gain insight into how to redevelop a football ground while continuing to play in it.
Officials from Barcelona have twice visited Anfield to gain insight into how to redevelop a football ground while continuing to play in it.
Liverpool’s Main Stand expansion is continuing apace with the extra 8.500 seats being added while games have continued to be played at the stadium.
It is a method the Catalan giants are hoping to replicate with their own planned rebuild which will bring the Nou Camp to a capacity of 105,000 with all the seats covered.
Work is scheduled to start in Barcelona in 2017/18 and finish in 2022.
At Anfield around 550 workers from construction partner Carillion are in week 74 of an 88 week build phase which will lead to the first handover point to the club.
A site visit today gave a detailed look at how the whole thing will fit together and the roll the separate floors will play.
The concrete floors for the highest seats in the new stand have been evident for a few weeks and today the first red seats were put into place.
The top level of seats are on level six and the Main Stand stretches 40m (131 feet) into the air, almost twice the height of the existing stand.
Luckily for fans, escalators will take them up to every floor in the development.
For now the level six seats look down on the roof of the current Main Stand but it will witness just three more games before demolition begins shortly after the final home game of the season against Chelsea on Wednesday, May 11.
The club will first remove the seats in the current stand – and install them into a central seating area for fans on one the concourses as a permanent reference to the existing stand – before work to take it down will begin.
It will be conducted from pitch side with the pitch protected during a process which is expected to take five weeks based on two shifts.
New floodlights are also part of the project and can already be seen in the ground.
The new Main Stand is based on a symmetrical design with turnstile entrances at both the Anfield Road end and at the Kop end.
Steps lead up to a podium on level two which will serve as an entrance for ticket holders.
Kitchens are being built in the same spot on each level to service concessions and those extra corporate facilities.
Level five is a VIP floor with hospitality also available on levels three and four. At lower levels a huge concourse stretches 140m along the whole width of the stand which will include lots of food and drink outlets with an emphasis on street food.
All the new seats are expected to be available for the first home game of the season, though the Reds have already applied to the Premier League for the first game of the season to be played away so as to maximise the time available for work to be completed.
Already dominating the Liverpool skyline the stand will be the biggest in the country once finished and will take Anfield’s overall capacity to 54,000.
(Copyright: Liverpool Echo, 03-05-2016)