The statutory deadline for secretary of state’s decision is set for tomorrow. The authority has asked for an extension, caused by the scale of Bramley-Moore Dock stadium plan.
It’s been almost three weeks since the Liverpool City Council unanimously approved Everton FC’s Bramley-Moore Dock Stadium scheme. That matters, because three weeks is exactly how long the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has to give his approval (or lack thereof, which would prompt a review).
But it’s been confirmed today that the government’s representative requires more time than the statutory 21 days. Both the city and football club accepted the decision, it’s not an unexpected one. Projects of such scale and relevance to the entire region are allowed to be taken into extra time.
Especially taking into account the objections from Historic England and other conservationists. While these were not regarded prohibitive by the city council, the housing secretary could have a different view.
If the government representative gives his green light, construction of the new Everton ground could begin already this spring, leaving enough time to open it for the 2024/25 season. But the remaining time buffer isn’t big, so timing of proceedings is important for the club.
Building the 52,888-seater is expected to take 150 weeks. If the opening in August of 2024 is to be met, groundbreaking should take place by August of this year. It’s thus no wonder that the Toffees and their fans are keeping their eye on the clock for the secretary of state’s decision.