Club Bolívar facing challenges to achieve new stadium vision

Officials in the Bolivian city of La Paz have stated that Primera División football giant Club Bolívar will require the backing of national law should its full ambitions for a new stadium be realised.

Club Bolívar, which last week hit the headlines by becoming the latest team to partner with City Football Group (CFG), the parent entity of English Premier League club Manchester City, has outlined plans to develop a new stadium in the Tembladerani area of La Paz.

Club Bolívar has its own stadium in Tembladerani, Estadio Libertador Simón Bolívar, but the 5,000 capacity venue is only used for training sessions and friendly matches, with official games held at the 41,000-capacity Estadio Hernando Siles (pictured).

Club Bolívar last week revealed a venture designed to mark the team’s centenary in 2025, with the new stadium at the heart of this. The Centenario plan outlines two different schemes, resulting in a stadium with a capacity of either 20,000 or 25,000.

It will be built at the site of the Estadio Libertador Simón Bolívar, but for the larger capacity to be achieved will require additional land where the current south stand sits. Architect Álvaro Viaña, municipal secretary for development planning of the Mayor’s Office of La Paz, told Bolivian newspaper El Pais that the process to secure the land will take approximately eight months.

Viaña added that while the Mayor’s office is aware of the Centenario plan, it has yet to receive official contact from the club. He said: “For the project to build a new stadium in the Tembladerani area, they would not only require the space they have, but also neighbouring sectors that are municipally owned. These spaces could be transferred to Club Bolívar, but like all public property, when acquired it has to be authorised by a national law.”

Writing on his Twitter account earlier this week, Club Bolívar president Marcelo Claure confirmed that work is expected to begin on the site this year. He added: “The Bolivaristas’ greatest desire was to play in our own home. We will be unbeatable at home and we will suffocate our rivals with the passion of our fans. I am proud to share that this year the construction of our heavenly house begins.”

Club Bolívar last week joined the City Football Group family as its first ‘partner club’. Founded in 1925, Club Bolívar boasts 29 domestic league titles, the most of any Bolivian football club. As a partner club, CFG said Club Bolívar will be able to access a wide breadth of expertise, proprietary technology, best practice, and strategic advice developed by City Football Group over the past seven years through its multi-club structure.

On the business side, CFG said it would help Club Bolívar grow its partnership revenue, build world-class facilities, promote league-wide improvements, and support the development of its key executives.

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