The fourth referendum on future football stadium in Zurich is the third one in favour of a stadium. Will this be enough to deliver the 18,000-capacity ground?
On Sunday the people of Zurich have spoken, yet again, about their stance regarding a football-specific stadium being built in the city. Although there were a few more issues on the ballot (and cycling path programme proved most popular), the stadium was by far the most polarising idea. But, just like during the last referendum of 2018, the community voted in favour of the stadium being built.
While in 2018 the stadium received 53.8% of the vote, this time the people were more on its side with 59%. Two years ago there were parts of the city where the project was rejected, particularly among those expected to be most affected by it. But on Sunday even residents of districts 4, 5 and 10 showed support within the margin of 55%.
Even residents of the quiet Höngg area, for whom the planned twin towers will be very imposing, were in favour. That's meaningful as they were against the project back in 2018. It finally seems the stadium is bound to be built, seeing the left-leaning opposition on the losing side.
Keep in mind, FC Zurich and Grasshoppers have been playing at the multi-use Letzigrund stadium ever since the old Hardturm was demolished. Since 2007 the city remains without a football-only ground that the clubs could use.
Meanwhile, the current bid to build it, nicknamed 'the Ensemble', would provide an 18,000-capacity arena at no cost to taxpayers. Public money would be used in a portion of the project that includes affordable housing and childcare, however bulk would be financed thanks to the two commercial towers, offering 570 medium-price apartments combined.