Manchester United has detailed plans to upgrade Old Trafford, with fans of the Premier League club set to be consulted on the work.
United announced last month that initial meetings have taken place between the club and “a number of architectural and engineering companies”. The companies have presented their credentials as potential partners for the project.
United hopes to modernise Old Trafford with the project, although no decision has yet been made on the scope or budget of the plans. There are also no specific details on potential capacity increases.
With a capacity of around 73,000, Old Trafford is the largest club stadium in England. In October, BBC Sport reported that United had opened discussions on a “major redevelopment” of the stadium that would centre on the Sir Bobby Charlton Stand.
It was reported that the expansion of Old Trafford could increase the stadium’s capacity to 80,000. The most recent redevelopment work at Old Trafford was carried out in 2006, and in May last year United’s executive co-chairman and director Joel Glazer stated the need to “significantly increase” investment in the stadium.
Problems relating to a nearby railway line have previously been viewed as a potential obstacle to any work on the Sir Bobby Charlton Stand, but the Daily Mail has reported that these concerns have been eased due to advances in technology.
Speaking at a recent fans’ forum meeting, Collette Roche, United’s chief operating officer, said: “These meetings have produced exciting potential ideas, although it’s important to note that we’re still at an early stage and it’s premature to talk about timetables.”
Stadium redevelopment plans are expected to be discussed during United’s upcoming Fans’ Advisory Board meeting. It will be the first meeting of the new group, which has been set up as a channel for board-level dialogue between the club and the fans.