Stadion Hristo Botev

Updated: 19.09.2022

Target capacity18 788
Country Bulgaria
CityPlovdiv
ClubsBotev Plovdiv
CategoryConstruction in progress
Construction 2012-2022
Cost 43.6 mln BGN (29 mln $)
Design Vamos Architecture & Design
Contractor PIMK, Valmex
Design time 2012-2014

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Stadion Hristo Botev – construction description

First conceptual renditions of this stadium were presented back in 2012. But with the club not having the 35-year ownership of the ground secured back then (only approved in Feb 2014) and final design being worked on, the progress was symbolic at first.

Real demolition of the old stands began in early 2014 as the club presented its final vision of Bulgaria’s best stadium, or so it was called upon presentation. After the late launch construction was announced to be done in April 2015, with opening scheduled for May.

The modified design by local office Vamos includes 75% of the 18,788 seats covered by enclosed roof (initial vision had uncovered corners) with all spectators located on one tier. Dominated by yellow and black colours of the club, the stands will have a typical layout: north end will belong to the fanatic fans, signaled by the big number 12 (for ‘12th man’) written with seats. Away fans will have 1,500-1,600 seats in the south.

The new stadium will retain only one element of the old one – historical stairs leading to the main grandstand. Even the name will be changed, but this is expected to be preceded by thorough consultation.

The investment was able to get off the ground thanks to private funding from the club's owner, Tsvetan Vasilyev, one of the richest men in Bulgaria. For the duration of the project, Botev moved to a training stadium at his football academy, also built with funds from the billionaire.

In the summer of 2014, however, work was halted as Tsvetan Vasilyev was arrested and his bank closed. The city authorities tried to rescue the situation by allocating some funds to continue the work, but in 2015 the construction was definitely stopped. By this time the reinforced concrete structure of the eastern and southern stands was ready, as well as part of the skeleton in the north. The least amount of work was done on the west side.

Work resumed in 2019, but at that time it was mainly limited to the removal of trees and bushes that had grown in the area of the suspended construction. It was not until the end of 2020, thanks to the donation of 25 million leva from the central budget, that work began to finalise the entire project. The contractor was given two years to complete the construction, so according to the schedule, the facility should be ready at the end of 2022.

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