|Clubs||Aston Villa FC|
|Category||Design awaiting implementation|
|Cost||£ 100 M|
Villa Park – design description
How did the new redevelopment plans for Villa Park come about?
Villa Park underwent its last major redevelopment in 2000–2001, when a new west stand, much larger than the previous one, was built from scratch. Since then there has been talk of further expansion, and there was even a plan to rebuild the north stand along the lines of the west stand, but this has not materialised.
In 2016 Aston Villa FC, after many years at the top league level, were relegated to the Championship. After a further three seasons, however, the team returned to the Premier League, prompting a surge in interest in tickets, as well as hospitality packages.
In response to demand, thinking began on new plans for the stadium expansion, and a public consultation was held. The first renderings appeared in August 2022, with the concept prepared by Grimshaw studio in collaboration with Trivandi.
Villa Park expansion is not only important for the club and the local community. The stadium in April 2023 was included in the final list of 10 venues submitted as part of the UK and Ireland's bid to host Euro 2028 and has the potential to become one of the tournament's arenas if the bid is successful.
What are the assumptions behind the planned redevelopment of Villa Park?
The main premise of the planned redevelopment is to demolish the stand built between 1976 and 1977 behind the north gate and then build a completely new, larger and more modern one in its place. The new stand will connect to the neighbouring ones through the corners, although it will retain its individual character. With its external appearance, it will fit in with its surroundings without disturbing the landscape.
The construction of the new stand will increase the stadium's seating capacity by more than 7,000, so that the total capacity of the facility will exceed 50,000 spectators. As part of the project, the west stand will also undergo modernisation. Changes will include the hospitality area and the players' tunnel will be moved to a corner. The catering and hospitality offer will be improved, so that the venue is expected to attract people even outside match days.
The design includes changes throughout the stadium's surroundings, including the redevelopment of the entrance from Witton Lane to the area in front of the north stand. An open space for fans will be created in front of the stand, while the further northern section of this square will include parking spaces.
Also part of the project is the so-called Brookvale Academy, which is a plan to build two training pitches with artificial surfaces (one under a roof) for the academy, together with associated infrastructure. The new pitches will be located adjacent to Witton railway station. The plan is being implemented as a first step, with completion planned for late summer 2023.
The club is in discussions about improving the transport infrastructure around Villa Park. These primarily relate to Witton railway station and how it can be better prepared to accommodate the large numbers of people at stadium events, especially once the capacity of the venue has been increased.
What changes have been made to Villa Park expansion project?
An important part of the initial concept was a new building, the so-called Villa Live, a retail and entertainment space intended to be a meeting place for the local community. Plans included a new club shop and museum. The building was to stand adjacent to the north stand, occupying the vacant space in front of it. However, in July 2023, the club published an updated concept in which the project was truncated from Villa Live.
As plans for Villa Live were pushed back, there was to be significantly more open space in front of the north stand, which could be used by fans and the local community, as well as for various events. The revised concept is to locate the club shop in the north-east corner of the new stand.
An alternative to Villa Live is to retain the old academy building stretching along Witton Lane, which was originally intended to be demolished. The building is to be refurbished to serve as a meeting place for supporters and as an event centre, allowing for various events and even the creation of a small football pitch inside.
A pub will operate in what is known as The Warehouse and fans are to be able to watch matches. The building is also set to house new administration facilities, relocated from the North Stand.
Aston Villa hopes to complete the upgrade of the academy building before the start of Euro 2024, so that fans can experience the excitement of that tournament, as well as the Summer Olympics, which will follow shortly afterwards.
The cancellation of Villa Live is intended to speed up the development. It does not signify a complete abandonment of the plans by the club, which hopes to build Villa Live at a later date.
When will Villa Park expansion plan come to fruition?
Work on the new north stand is estimated to take around two years. The start date for these is not yet known. The development is expected to cost more than £100m to complete. The project is described as the 'first phase' of the redevelopment, with further reforms already under preliminary consideration. The long-term vision is to further increase the capacity of Villa Park, to over 52,500 spectators.
England: Latest Villa Park expansion plans revealed
Premier League side Aston Villa have unveiled updated plans for the redevelopment of the north stand of their home ground. A revised planning application has been submitted to Birmingham City Council incorporating a number of design changes to the new structure.
England: Aston Villa among the stadium elite?
Villa Park is not one of the new stadiums - it dates back to the 19th century. During its many decades of existence, the venue was used not only by the Birmingham club, but also on occasions of the World Cup and UEFA Euro. It is very possible that the not-too-distant future will bring back the glory years of The Villans' stadium.
England: Renderings of the revamped Villa Park revealed!
Aston Villa have just unveiled graphics showing what their home ground will look like after redevelopment. The club is already after consultation with local residents about the planned upgrade and hopes to start the first phase of the project by next year.