Contracts for Salford’s £26m Community Stadium were signed today (Wednesday 24 November) as work to prepare the Barton site finishes.
The joint venture company between Salford City Council and Peel signed a licence deal with Salford City Reds for the club to play at the stadium.
The contract means the Reds will have a licence to use the stadium from the start of the 2012 rugby Super League when the community facility opens.
Salford City Council formed the joint venture company with Peel to develop and deliver the stadium which is the largest single investment in sport in the city for decades.
Since May diggers have been on-site to prepare the land off the M60 for development. Now that is complete, contractors Buckinghams will start to build the stadium in December after signing contracts with the city council and Peel.
The community stadium will be a centre for a range of community activities and also home to the Salford City Reds who will have a licence to play there.
Initially it will be built for a 12,000 crowd but it will be extended to accommodate up to 20,000 over time.
It will have built-in offices, player facilities, hospitality boxes, concessions, community resources, two community outdoor sports pitches and will be available for business and public hire.
And, an outline planning application for around 21,000 square metres of non-food retail has been approved in principle as part of the plans.
Development of the stadium will be phased with retail units added later. Once complete it will be managed by the council-Peel joint venture company.
Leader of Salford City Council, Cllr John Merry said: “The stadium will be another landmark development for Salford that will benefit the economy and the community who will have access to use its quality facilities.”After lots of careful planning we’re seeing excellent progress being made towards what will be a fantastic asset for the city and the key to the success of the Reds’ Super League season.”
Mike Butterworth, property director at Peel said: “This is a very important day for us which has been a long time coming. It will be great to see stadium going up now that the ground preparation works have been completed, and to see Salford City Reds play at the stadium which will provide a wonderful new community facility for the people of Salford.”
Chair of Salford City Reds, John Wilkinson said: “Over the last 10 years we have witnessed neighbouring clubs in our conurbation unveil new stadiums and observed the success seen at Warrington, Wigan and Bolton, to name a few.
“Supporters and families have come to expect good facilities, the City of Salford Stadium will be so welcome and respected to make Salford City Reds a major force in Super League and a perfect stage for world rugby.”
Director of Buckingham Group, Tim Brown said: “We are extremely delighted to have been awarded the City of Salford Community Stadium construction works. Not only will this exciting new development benefit the people of Salford, it is a significant boost for the Salford City Reds and its fans as they begin their campaign for a new Super League licence.”