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Features

NEC takes Bird’s Nest inspiration with Goffertstadion redevelopment plans

Dutch Eredivisie football team NEC Nijmegen has presented three concepts for a redeveloped Goffertstadion, including one inspired by Beijing’s National Stadium.

The proposals were outlined to fans at public meetings on Monday and Tuesday as part of NEC’s ‘Ons Nest’ campaign. NEC last month joined forces with main sponsor, construction company KlokGroep, to launch a venture for the team to buy back Goffertstadion.

The campaign, entitled ‘Ons Nest’ or Our Nest, is designed to make the club more financially secure by improving the stadium and driving more revenue from it. NEC said it was important that income is generated by redeveloping the stadium and potentially adding extra seats; adding social and commercial ventures in and around the facility; and exploring real estate development in the form of the addition of new apartments integrated in, or next to, the stadium.

A long-term strategy has been developed which outlines the acquisition of the stadium from the Municipality of Nijmegen, while allowing the club to continue operating effectively in the Eredivisie.

NEC has now fleshed out its thinking, which will include expanding Goffertstadion from its current 12,500 capacity to 15,000, adding six extra corporate boxes to the current 14, plus the incorporation of 200 apartments.

The inclusion of the latter element is the main part of the concept drawings revealed, with option C (main image) taking inspiration from Beijing’s Bird’s Nest in its appearance by incorporating the residential buildings within the structure of the stadium.

Option A and B (see below), meanwhile, would place two residential towers at the west end of the stadium or within a new main stand.

Dutch newspaper de Gelderlander said NEC hopes to make a decision on the design before the summer. Work is not expected to commence until the end of 2024, but NEC will first need to gain approval from the city council and successfully acquire the stadium from the municipality.

NEC last month said the municipality supports the plans it is drawing up with KlokGroep. The project team is being assisted by partners in the field of landscape architecture (Felixx) and cultural-historical advice (Hylkema Erfgoed).

Goffertstadion opened in 1939, with NEC calling the stadium home since 1945.

Images: NEC Nijmegen