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Plans for new Zurich stadium backed by locals

Zurich residents have once again pledged their support for a new 18,000-seat football stadium in the Swiss city.

The planned Credit Suisse Arena, which will serve as the home of top-flight club FC Zurich and second-tier team Grasshoppers, was backed by almost 60 per cent of residents who participated in the latest vote — an increase on the last vote in 2018.

Swiss broadcaster SRF noted that all city districts voted in favour of the project, including Höngg, which was against the plans in 2018.

The second vote took place after the IG Freiräume Zurich-West group expressed its opposition to the stadium project. Lisa Kromer, a member of IG Freiräume Zurich-West, said the group had hoped the “critical voices would have grown since the last vote” but this did not prove to be the case.

The new stadium will be built on the site of the former Hardturm ground, which was demolished in 2007. Credit Suisse, the banking and financial services group, acquired naming rights to the venue in July 2019.

FC Zurich president Ancillo Canepa said: “I am delighted with the result of the vote and would like to take this opportunity to thank the people of Zurich for their renewed support.

“My thanks also go to HRS, which, as the initiator, was very committed to our joint project, as well as the city council and the various local councils, whose support has been an important contribution to this successful vote.

“This ‘yes’ to the football stadium as well as to residential construction opens up new perspectives for us and the city of Zurich in terms of sport and urban planning.”

Credit Suisse Arena is scheduled to open during the 2022-23 season. The stadium will also host some Swiss national team matches, international matches and women’s fixtures.

FC Zurich and Grasshoppers currently share the 31,000-capacity Letzigrund stadium, which is primarily an athletics facility. It is hoped the new stadium will provide a more intimate experience for supporters of the two clubs.

Image: Credit Suisse