Stadion Polonii Bytom
|Target capacity||2 220|
|Category||Construction in progress|
|Construction||02/2022 – 03/2023|
|Cost||PLN 30.478 M ($ 7.5 M)|
|Contractor||Tamex Obiekty Sportowe SA|
Stadion Polonii Bytom – construction description
How did the plans for a new, intimate stadium for Polonia Bytom originate?
Stadion im. Edwarda Szymkowiaka on Olimpijska Street was last modernised in 2007-2008. In order to adapt it to the licensing requirements of the Ekstraklasa, in which Polonia Bytom played at the time, the following measures were taken: the installation of plastic seats, floodlight masts, a heated pitch and the roofing of the central part of the north stand. However, these were ad hoc measures, and in the long term the stadium needed comprehensive modernisation.
In 2014, a redevelopment design was created, which involved changing the existing oval form of the facility to a rectangular, football-specific one. The stands were to surround the pitch on three sides, while an indoor ice rink would be built behind the goal on the east side. In connection with the planned investment, the eastern arch of the Edward Szymkowiak Stadium was demolished in autumn 2014. However, no further steps were taken to implement the design at this stage.
The matter was revisited in 2016. At the end of that year, a tender was issued for the design and construction of a stadium with three covered stands, with a capacity of around 8,500 spectators. The contract was not signed until April 6, 2018, with the winning bidder being S-Sport, which was to carry out the investment at a cost of PLN 39.6 million. However, the company failed to meet the timeframe and at the end of the year withdrew from the contract. By then, among other things, the stadium's seats and roof had been dismantled, making it unfit for events. Polonia Bytom, meanwhile, moved out to Stadion Szombierek Bytom.
Even during its last stay in the Ekstraklasa (2007-2011), Polonia Bytom was experiencing considerable financial and organisational problems. In 2017, there was a dissolution of the second division Polonia and a re-establishment of the club in the form of a new entity, which started by playing in the fourth division. After two years, the team was promoted to the III league (fourth tier of competition).
In 2020, a new plan was presented for the construction of an intimate facility, which was to be built next to the ruined Edward Szymkowiak Stadium (west of it). The stadium was ultimately to be used for a football academy, but until the main arena was rebuilt (which seems a distant prospect at the moment), it was to become home to Polonia Bytom's first team as well. A three-storey club building was also part of the project.
How is the construction of the new Polonia Bytom Stadium progressing?
On December 30, 2020, a tender was announced for the construction of an intimate stadium under the design-and-build formula. After the envelopes were opened, it turned out that the lowest bid clearly exceeded the investor's expectations. However, after Bytom city councillors voted through additional funds, it was possible to sign the contract, which took place on June10, 2021. The tender was won by Tamex Obiekty Sportowe SA, and the value of the contract is PLN 30.478 million.
For the first six months, work continued on the creation of the design documentation. Construction work began on February 7, 2022, with completion scheduled for spring 2023.
What will the new Polonia Bytom stadium be like?
The new football stadium is to be equipped with a pitch with artificial turf, located on a north-south axis. The facility will have modest stands for 2,220 spectators, including 250 seats under the roof on the west side and 196 seats in the visitors' section behind the north goal. Four floodlight masts, fitted with LED spotlights, will stand in the corners.
Behind the southern goal, a three-storey club building will be constructed, which will house, among other things, changing rooms, a modest museum, a cafeteria, rooms for the football academy, the senior team, the esports section and administration. The stadium is designed to meet the requirements for matches in the second division and, with a small outlay, can also be adapted for first division matches.