Roazhon Park (Stade de la Route de Lorient)
|1,831 (VIP seats)|
|Clubs||Stade Rennais FC|
|Inauguration||15.09.1912 (Stade Rennais - SA du Lycée de Rennes, 6-1)|
|Renovations||1939, 1955-1956, 1967, 1987, 1999-2004|
|Cost||€37.3 million (1999-2004)|
|Design||Bruno Gaudin (1999-2004)|
|Record attendance||29,490 (Stade Rennais – Olympique Marseille, 20.08.2005)|
|Address||111 route de Lorient, 35000 Rennes|
Description: Roazhon Park
Although it stands on the bank of River Vilaine since 1912, it wasn’t Stade Rennais’s first stadium. The team moved here since their previous pitch was being flooded every winter. Due to location along the road leading to Lorient, stadium name has historically been set as Stade de la Route de Lorient.
First venue here had one wooden stand accommodating some 3,000 people. For decades its shape hasn’t seen major changes, until just before WWII, when the municipality dedicated some of its resources to expand sections that were heavily overcrowded by then. But ironically, first users were American soldiers stationed here after liberation.
As crowds started growing again after war ended (exceeding 20,000 first time in 1952), wooden structures were replaced by concrete by 1956. But with official capacity of 12,000, the stadium still had to take crowds of nearly 30,000.
Floodlights came in 1967 and soon after stands were to grow to 30,000. But plans ended up scrapped for lack of money. Similar scenario repeated in 1980s as the club advanced to Ligue 1 and started growing again. But again plans didn’t come to fruition. Success was reached in late 1990s as redevelopment plan by architect Bruno Gaudin was launched in 1999, rebuilding one stand at a time until 2004. The scheme cost €37.3 million, significantly more than expected at the beginning of works.
Similar amount was to be spent to expand the venue to 35,000 for Euro 2016, but was scrapped as one more plan for the venue. Interestingly, despite being close from 1960s, Stade Rennais have never exceeded the 30,000 mark with their attendance.
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