Austria: Rapid preparing to relocate

source: kleinezeitung.at

Austria: Rapid preparing to relocate They were planning to redevelop their current venue, but this turns out to be even 40% more expensive than building anew in a different spot. Possibly already in 2014 Rapid will be opening their new ground.

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Opened in 1977 and revamped in 2001, the Gerhard-Hanappi-Stadion is hardly sufficient for Rapid’s aspirations. Austria’s most popular club is the only one in the country to have stayed above 15,000 average crowd since mid-2009.

This achievement looks even better once we realize that with 18,500 capacity, their current venue doesn’t give much more space. And demand for more important games exceeds the 20,000 mark easily.

This is why Rapid were examining chances to expand the stadium to some 25,000 for several years. However the result is a very discouraging one. It turns out that adding capacity would cost even €65 million, while building anew in a new spot – as low as €45 million.

Now club president Rudolf Edlinger announced Rapid are ready to move away from their 35-year-old home. No details about the project are known yet, but it is expected that relocation could happen even as soon as in mid-2014, after the 2013/14 season.

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