The Municipality of Milan is set to call on Serie A football clubs AC Milan and Inter Milan to make key amendments to their new stadium proposal, along with exploring the potential for the existing Stadio Giuseppe Meazza to be granted protected status.
Following a public debate process that ran last year, some of the suggestions that were put forward, and were voted on by the City Council last month, have now been officially incorporated. In the coming days, Milan and Inter will be asked to update their feasibility study to incorporate a number of requests.
These revolve around five key proposals. Firstly, that the capacity of the new stadium be increased from the currently proposed 60,000-65,000 to “70,000 seats as the optimal objective”. A major concern regarding the new stadium proposal has been how its smaller capacity, versus the circa 80,000 of the Meazza, would impact on ticket prices. An increase has been proposed to ensure that the new venue offers at least the same percentage of affordable tickets as the Meazza currently does.
To ensure the implementation of further works of public purpose or of general interest, the Municipality has indicated among the priorities the identification of additional economic resources, so as to be able to allocate a share of at least €40m (£35.1m/$43.4m) for regeneration projects to be implemented in the neighbouring districts.
The proposal will then be called upon to increase the green area, so that it represents at least 50% of the total footprint, up from the current 18%, to “give priority to achieving carbon neutrality and minimising environmental impact”, and comply with the Air and Climate Plan of the Municipality.
The new stadium will also need to be moved further away from nearby residential buildings, with the provision of solutions to mitigate the noise impact.
The Meazza, more commonly known as the San Siro, had been expected to be partially demolished after holding the opening ceremony of the 2026 Winter Olympic Games, the year in which it will mark its centenary, and converted as part of the wider sports and entertainment district vision for the site.
However, it was revealed last year that this plan had changed with the Meazza now set to be demolished completely when Milan and Inter move into their new home, in order to better accommodate the sports and entertainment district, which will include a public park.
The debate process allowed the presentation and emergence of proposals connected to stakeholders who are seeking to ensure the Meazza remains. The Municipality said yesterday (Thursday): “Following the resolution just approved, the administration will ask the competent bodies about the possibility that the Meazza be brought back to the category of restricted public sites.”
In November, the Municipality was presented with a 64-page report on the proposed new stadium that was the result of a public consultation that organisers stated had been one of the most followed in Italian history.
Public debate commenced on the Stadio Milano project on September 28, with a fresh look provided at the design proposals and original plans to retain some part of the Meazza being scrapped. The whole process was previewed at a presentation, during which fresh renderings were revealed that displayed some differences from the original plans.
In December 2021, Populous saw off competition from Manica/Sportium to land the contract to design the new stadium. Populous’ project, dubbed ‘The Cathedral’, was selected, with the coming weeks having promised the finalisation of the objectives and development process of Milan’s new stadium.
Bureaucratic red tape has stymied progress since then, but the plans laid out in September showed the angular stylings originally proposed for the new 60,000-seat stadium having been somewhat smoothed off.
Following the latest developments, Milan and Inter will need to consider their options with a ‘Plan B’ option of a stadium in the Sesto San Giovanni commune still being touted.
Giancarlo Tancredi, Councillor for Urban Regeneration in Milan, said, according to the Corriere della Sera: “I am particularly satisfied with the repercussions that the most critical neighbourhoods will receive.
“Forty million (euros) is a lot of resources with which we will be able to carry out interventions for the community. Keeping great football in the San Siro area is a priority, and I hope that the clubs accept the new conditions and that any constraints do not compromise the hard work done to date.”