Italian Serie A football club Cagliari has received backing from the city council to proceed with plans to build a new stadium on the site of its former home, the Stadio Sant’Elia.

This marks a crucial final step for the Sardinian club, which has been intent on expanding on the site of the Sant’Elia since 2015.

Construction on the new stadium, which is to be delivered by Sportium and Manica Architecture, is due to begin in 2022, with completion expected to be 2024 at the earliest. The stadium will have a capacity of around 25,000, expandable to 30,000.

Cagliari has been playing home matches at the temporary Sardegna Arena since the 2017-18 season after the original Stadio Sant’Elia was closed the previous summer with a view to being demolished and completely rebuilt.

The project highlights the club’s ambition and it is hoped that the new stadium will be an “exceptional arena” that can help the economic development of the local region.

Cagliari said of its vision for the new ground: “The new stadium in Cagliari will be the pride of the whole island and the first real strength of a team capable of representing it in the best way.”

The city council initially accepted the guide plan for the stadium back in November 2019 but it has taken 18 months for final approval to be given, largely due to the pandemic.

Cagliari director Stefano Signorelli explained: “We are satisfied with this vote, it is a step that has been awaited for months and it allows us to be able to proceed with the final project.

“We have been working for some time, with our partners and all members of the club, for the creation of a highly identity-driven, innovative and sustainable stadium.”

Last month, Cagliari selected Costim Group as the general contractor for its new stadium. Costim will support Cagliari as an industrial and construction partner for the new stadium, with the company having been selected following a selection process that considered a large number of potential partners.

In July last year, Cagliari partnered with Istituto per il Credito Sportivo to aid the financing of its stadium project. The Istituto operates in the credit sector for sport and culture projects and carries out consultancy work for public and private developments. It was appointed to attract investment to the Cagliari project, which includes the stadium and associated development of the surrounding area.

Image: Manica Architecture