At the end of November, the Prime Minister of Romania, Ludovic Orban, officially approved the newly built Steaua Stadionul. It was not a formal opening of the stadium as it is scheduled for April 9th, 2021. The facility is to serve the players of Steaua in the third division.
Football, rugby and maybe the Romanian national team
In addition to Steaua's third league matches, rugby games will be played at the venue. Steaua officials have announced an increase in financial outlays for this sport discipline, and playing at the new stadium will certainly help in the development of the rugby section. The military officials who run the club will make efforts to host the Romanian national team at the stadium from time to time, e.g. during the Nations League matches. It is also known that the teams that will play matches at the European Championship in Bucharest next summer will be preparing at Steaua Stadionul.
FCSB, the club that used the name Steaua Bucharest until 2017, will not play for sure at this stadium. As a result of losing a lawsuit with the Romanian army, this entity lost the rights to the name Steaua and the club's crest with a characteristic star. This team will continue to play their games at Stadionul Naţional, which is far too big for the club's current needs.
The opening date (April 9th, 2021) is not chosen by chance, as it will be exactly 47 years since the opening of the Ghencea Stadium - a venue that has served the club for decades. The decision-makers involved in the construction of the stadium hope that by the spring of 2021 the epidemiological situation in Romania will calm down enough that it will be possible to play a match with the spectators. At this point, Steaua is playing its home games on pitch 5, which is part of the club's stadium complex.
The planned opening date was confirmed at the end of November by Mădălin Hîncu of CSA Steaua, who said: "We will start taking over the stadium in early December, it will take around two months, and we expect the stadium to be fully ready in April-May 2021."
The stadium, as well as the area of the historic Ghencea boulevard, are currently undergoing the last cleaning and finishing works. The hybrid pitch has now been laid and the scoreboard installed. The facade of the stadium will be illuminated in red and blue in the evenings, in the colours of Steaua.
Capacitive parameters and cost of building the stadium
The construction of the stadium began in February 2018 and officially completed on November 30th, 2020. For a stadium of this size, it is indeed a very short time to complete the investment.
Steaua Stadionul is currently the largest sports complex in Romania, occupying 82,000 square meters. The audience alone has 31,254 seats. The stadium will house the CSA Steaua military museum and a hotel with 24 rooms and a total of 48 beds. The media zone will be located at the top of the Tribune 1, which will meet all UEFA and FIFA requirements. The pitch with a hybrid surface is to be 105 x 68 m.
Initially, the stadium was supposed to be star-shaped, but due to cost-cutting, the original design was significantly simplified. The total value of the investment in 2018 was to be RON 301 million (64.5 million €). After re-approving the technical and economic indicators in October 2019, the total cost of building the stadium went up to RON 448 million (€ 94.7 million). Changes in the design increased the capacity of the facility from 30,500 to 31,254 viewers. They also managed to increase the number of VIP seats, from 1,420 seats provided in the original solution to 2,678 seats.
The new stadium will be managed by the Ministry of National Defense. Steaua Stadionul was built in less than 2 years. The investment was financed entirely from public funds. The Ministry of Public Works, Development and Administration has commissioned the construction of the facility by a consortium of three Romanian companies (Terragaz Construct, Concelex, MC General Construct).
The mayor of Sector 6 of the Romanian capital, Ciprian Ciucu, says that the new Steaua stadium is perfectly tailored not only to the club's needs, but also to Romanian football, while making biting remarks about Stadionul Naţional, which he thought was too expensive.
"The sports complex is three times cheaper than the National Stadium, built three times faster by the consortium of Romanian companies," said Ciucu.
Author: Tomasz Sobura