Liverpool Football Club has opened a first-stage public consultation exercise as it prepares to share early plans for the expansion of its Anfield Road Stand.
The exercise will see the proposals shared with the local community, local businesses, supporters and key stakeholders, and will allow those attending to express their views regarding the plans.
This first stage exercise begins today as the club has issued an open invitation to members of the public to attend a drop in event which is scheduled between 4-8pm at Anfield. Similar events have been announced on 2 December (4-8pm) and 3 December (12-4pm).
Andy Hughes, LFC’s chief operating officer, discussed the exercise: “These first-stage consultation sessions we are holding are crucial as they will be used to inform the design proposals we are developing, which in turn will help us to make a decision on whether to proceed with the expansion as a whole.”
As well as the drop in events, the club has also organised for a project information pod to be placed on Anfield Road car park on 30 November (12-3pm) ahead of Liverpool’s fixture against Brighton & Hove Albion and on 4 December (5-8pm) prior to the Merseyside Derby against Everton.
The first-stage public consultation on the proposed Anfield Road Stand expansion is set to be open to feedback until midnight on 13 December. With the plans still early in its design development, the feedback will allow for changes to be made ahead of a second stage public consultation which has been scheduled for early 2020 when detailed plans are expected to be presented.
Hughes added: “For any expansion to the Anfield Road Stand to go ahead we need certainty on three key areas. Firstly, that we are able to reach an agreement with local residents, businesses and community groups that they will allow the expansion plan to take place, which will mean closing a short section of Anfield Road between 96 Avenue and Skerries Road.
“Secondly, that we have the right sustainable financial and economic model in place to deliver a long-term sustainable Anfield. And lastly, that we are able to successfully navigate the complex planning landscape. We need to be satisfied on all three points for work to proceed.”
The current proposals would see the Anfield Road Stand receive a capacity increase of around 7,000, with the majority of those seats set to be listed as general admission. With this being said some sports bar/lounge hospitality packages will be made available as a result of the development.
As well as providing Liverpool fans with added seats to watch the game, the proposed plans will also explore the opportunity in acquiring permanent permission to hold concerts and other major events at Anfield. These would include other sporting events such as Gaelic games and American football which would be played outside of LFC’s matchday calendar.
Hughes concluded: “We are working towards creating an expanded Anfield Road Stand which will see around 7,000 additional seats. The majority of these seats will be for general admission use and we expect some seats will be allocated for a sports bar/lounge-type hospitality in order to ensure the economic viability of the expansion. Further profiling is needed and we expect to provide more detail at the second-stage consultation early next year.
Insider Insight: Anfield has already undergone redevelopment following the expansion of its Main Stand, which was completed in 2016, that took its capacity to 54,742 and earned the club an extra £12m in revenue in its first operational season.
Should this proposed expansion to the Anfield Road Stand go ahead it would take the overall stadium capacity to over 61,000, no doubt adding yet again to its revenue and making it the third largest stadium in the English Premier League behind both the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (62,062) and Old Trafford (74,879).