Chelsea are given a lifeline on restarting their £1bn Stamford Bridge redevelopment as the Government hand out an extension on planning permission until next April – after the old agreement expired in lockdown
- The deadline for Chelsea’s planning permission expired on March 31
- But as that was during lockdown, they are eligible for an extension until April
- The £1bn redevelopment would have seen Stamford Bridge reach 60,000 seats
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Chelsea’s incredible 60,000-seater stadium proposals could be brought back from the brink under new plans announced by the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick.
The club’s hopes for a £1bn overhaul of their Stamford Bridge stadium appeared to be over at the end of March when planning permission expired without work beginning.
But on Monday, Jenrick unveiled plans that the Government hope will ignite a construction boom to help the economy in the coronavirus era.
Chelsea may have their £1bn stadium plans revived under new measures from the Government
The planning permission deadline for the Stamford Bridge rebuild passed on March 31
But under new Government proposals, Chelsea now have until April 2021 to begin work
Jenrick said that ‘planning permission deadlines will be extended… (that) will prevent work that has been temporarily disrupted by the pandemic from stopping altogether’.
And that is the key for Chelsea – sites that had an expiry date in lockdown are eligible for an extension until April 1, 2021. Their planning permission expired on March 31 and lockdown started March 23.
Under the original plan, Chelsea’s existing 41,600-seater Stamford Bridge stadium would be demolished to make way for the construction of the new 60,000 capacity venue.
Planning permission typically lasts for three years and Chelsea received permission to start knocking down buildings around Stamford Bridge to make extra space back in March 2017. But work never began.
Chelsea acknowledged the expiration of the planning permission deadline back in March.
The plans would see Stamford Bridge upgraded from 41,600 seats up to a 60,000 capacity
It remains to be seen whether owner Roman Abramovich will take advantage of the extension
They said: ‘Chelsea Football Club acknowledges that the planning permission we obtained for a new stadium expires on 31st March 2020.
‘We are grateful to all our fans and stakeholders, especially Hammersmith & Fulham Council, for their patience and understanding in the matter.
‘We will continue to consider our options for a new stadium, should economic conditions improve.’
It remains to be seen whether Chelsea’s owner, Roman Abramovich, deems the £1bn project financially viable in the current climate.
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