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Aberdeen executive pledges ‘world class’ stadium despite objections

George Yule, executive vice-chairman of Aberdeen, has said that the Scottish Premiership football club will deliver a “world class” new stadium, despite fresh objections from those opposing the development.

The club is planning to build a 20,000-capacity stadium, training academy and heritage museum in Kingsford, at a cost of £50m (€757m/$65.1m).

The initial proposal includes plans to deliver the project in two stages, with the community and sports facilities and football academy to be built first, and the stadium to follow. The club hopes to begin playing matches at the venue in the 2021-22 season.

However, according to the Press and Journal, the project has attracted criticism from various parties, and the ‘No to Kingsford’ group has lodged a new objection with the city council in an effort to block work.

Those opposed to the project have raised concerns that the development would be based on green belt land, as well as the creation of more traffic in the local area.

In a letter to the council, the group said: “There is a legal precedent to support the denial of this application in order to protect the Green Belt. It is therefore requested, on behalf of No Kingsford Stadium Limited, that the Council refuse planning permission.”

In response, Yule said the club will work to satisfy the demands of the group: “Our team of independent planning, environmental, economic and transport experts are confident that we have submitted a planning application which meets every requirement in the protests and addresses both genuine and perceived concerns.

“While those objecting to our proposals are obviously highlighting some of the very localised issues, it’s worth reiterating the overall socio-economic benefits that will be derived for the wider region if our plans get the go-ahead.

“These include investment and employment opportunities, greater sports and recreation facilities for all, which will help improve health and well-being in the area, not to mention the increase in reach of the excellent work of the community trust.

“This is in addition to the obvious benefits to the club in terms of attracting and retaining talent to improve our on-the-pitch performance and create the ripple effect of a feel-good factor.”

Yule added: “This is a major private sector investment in a world-class sports facility which will send out a strong and positive signal about Aberdeen at a time when confidence needs boosting.”

IMAGE: Aberdeen