England: London Stadium to increase capacity
source: StadiumDB.com [TS]; author: Tomasz Sobura
The ambition of West Ham officials is to have the largest ground in London where Premier League games are held. The club has just taken another step towards increasing the capacity of its venue.
At this point, London Stadium can accommodate 60,000 people. This is a lot, but still does not meet the growing demand for tickets. The average attendance at the facility in the present Premier League season is 57,379 spectators, which is 96% of the ground's auditorium. As you can see, it is really close to the stadium limit.
The Hammers management anticipated such a course of events and therefore submitted a planning application in the summer to make more seats available. This week, Newham Council made a positive decision for WHU, allowing the club to provide 2,500 additional seats.
Thus, the arena's capacity is to increase to 62,500, which will allow it to leap over Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and place West Ham United's ground in the first place in London when it comes to the EPL venues. An additional 2,500 seats are to be released once the safety certificate application has been completed.
This is the end of the first phase, but not the end of the expansion, as in the second stage London Stadium is to reach its target capacity of 67,000. This auditorium will be achieved after minor modifications of the stands behind the goals (Bobby Moore Stand and Sir Trevor Brooking Stand). The ground has the space to accommodate so many football fans already, but West Ham needs approval from the Newham Council before it can use its full seating potential.
West Ham United Vice-Chairman Baroness Brady said: “The application to increase the matchday capacity will give an even greater number of our fans the opportunity to watch our exciting team in action in person. Since the regular return of supporters this year, we have seen a terrific response with every Premier League fixture so far this season sold out."
The West Ham United venue will be London's largest Premier League stadium, but not the capital's biggest arena. Wembley Stadium (90,000), home to England's football team, and Twickenham Stadium (82,223), home to the national rugby side, are still larger.
Author: Tomasz Sobura