One of the country's biggest clubs, LD Alajuelense, has updated its plans for a new stadium. Three years ago, a design was presented that has recently undergone several changes.
Four stands instead of three
The most important modification is the resignation from the idea of a concert stage located in the southern part of the venue. A fourth stand will be built there, which gives the stadium a compact shape.
Less than three years ago, four possible locations for the venue were considered: La Guácima, Villa Bonita de Alajuela, El Coyol and Nuevo Alajuela. In the end, it won't be any of them. Turrúcares de Alajuela was selected, on route 27, next to Centro de Alto Rendimiento, which is the club's training centre. The capacity has also changed, reducing by 1,000 seats to 24,000.
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When it comes to premium seats, there will be over 3000. Sky boxes are to have 1,300 seats and the suites - 1,760. Compared to the previous design, the number of seats in suites is to increase, which at that time was planned to be 900.
It is known that the main stand will have 8,500 seats and the opposite tribune is designed to hold 7,000 spectators. "La Muralla Rojinegra'' will accommodate 3,000 die-hard fans and "Preferencial" - 2,500 people. Together with the seats of the higher standard it will give just over 24,000 of total capacity.
The facility is to be erected on a 9-hectare plot, with a spacious parking lot (2,000 spots), a museum and a sports clinic. Installation of cross ventilation, solar panels and water recycling is also considered. The authors of the stadium concept are PIASA Consultores, although Gensler, known from Guangzhou FC Stadium design, has recently joined the architectural team.
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Finding financing as the biggest challenge
The decision to start work on the development of the design resulted from the inability to modernize the present stadium. The construction cost of the new facility is estimated at $30 million (€26 million).
In April and May, "socios" meetings were to be held, the subject of which was to be the design of the stadium, its location and financing. Most of them, however, were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. It was only in July that it was possible to vote and finally approve the project.
After receiving the green light for the continuation of works on the new stadium, the club started developing the detailed design and applied for a building permit. Actions aimed at achieving these goals are to be implemented in the period from July 2021 to December 2022.
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Construction is expected to start in January 2023 and be completed in December 2024. According to this scenario, the opening of the new Alajuelense stadium would take place in January 2025. The financing mechanism for the new arena would be based on a bank trust.
This would prevent the investment from becoming dependent on the possible sale of Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto. Therefore, the pre-sale of seats in the new stadium will start soon. Socios (founding partners) will be able to rent a selected seat at the arena for a period of 15 years.
The funds obtained from this source will be released only after the fulfillment of a number of additional conditions, such as the producing of a land purchase agreement and raising a minimum of $4.2 million (€ 3.6 million) from the founding partners. The remaining part of the construction cost will be covered by a bank loan.