Italian Serie B football club Venezia and the City of Venice have unveiled plans for a new 18,000-seat stadium to replace the team’s historic current home.

Venezia, which is pushing for a return to Serie A under the stewardship of US businessman Joe Tacopina, currently plays at the Stadio Pierluigi Penzo, which opened in 1913 and is notable through its primary means of access being by boat.

The club and the city have now revealed details of a new stadium project, which will be built in the Quadrante di Tessera area, 12km from Venice. The stadium will be fully privately financed at a cost of €185m (£164.3m/$216.3m) with the potential to be expanded to a 25,000-seat capacity.

The stadium site will be located within a retail park encompassing commercial and entertainment facilities. Venezia said the stadium is intended to be a multi-use facility, adding that one of its stands will be entirely dedicated to premium seating and corporate boxes in an effort to encourage backing from the business sector.

Tacopina said: “This stadium represents many different things, but it is above all a home, the home of Venezia and all its fans. The project is important not only for the local team, but for all Italian football.

“Over the past 20 years, Serie A went into crisis, slipping to fourth or fifth place worldwide, and the cause is the lack of avant-garde sports facilities. The Penzo is a stadium with a long history behind it. It arouses romantic images, but is old, difficult to reach and has insufficient capacity. To return to occupy important positions internationally we need modern stadiums, able to generate profits to be reinvested in the teams to increase their competitiveness.”

Mayor of Venice, Luigi Brugnaro, added: “We do not present ideas, but a concrete project, for which I thank all the people who collaborated in its drafting. The structure, which will be built with private money, is a great source of pride not only for Venice football, but for the entire city: a symbol of rebirth that testifies Venice knows how to make a team.”

Subject to the necessary approvals, work on the new stadium is scheduled to commence in January 2021, with an opening date set for August 2023.

Image: Venezia FC