Design & Development

AC Milan decides on La Maura as proposed stadium site

Ippodromo Snai La Maura in Milan, Italy

Featured image credit: Goldmund100/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size

Italian Serie A football club AC Milan has confirmed Ippodromo Snai La Maura, an equestrian and horse racing facility located close to the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, as its targeted site for a new stadium.

The latest development follows meetings held yesterday (Thursday) between an AC Milan delegation led by Gerry Cardinale, founder and managing partner of the club’s US ownership group RedBird Capital Partners, and senior officials from the Municipality of Milan and Lombardy Region.

“With respect to La Maura, I reiterated that I acknowledge their interest, but what is needed is a project,” Mayor of Milan, Giuseppe Sala, told reporters. Sala added that the club believes it can present a “rough draft” of a project in a couple of weeks.

He said: “What I asked for is that since we have an open and formal discussion on the hypothesis of a stadium near San Siro, if they do not intend to proceed, they must formally confirm it to me.”

Following a separate meeting with Lombardy officials, President of Lombardy Region, Attilio Fontana, said: “Gerry Cardinale presented me with the project of the new stadium that he would like to build in the La Maura area in Milan. It was a cordial and positive meeting, which made me fully understand the intentions of AC Milan.”

However, Milan is likely to face significant challenges if it is to drive through its new vision for a stadium. The proposal has already drawn opposition from local residents and environmentalists, while securing ownership of the land could be an issue.

The Il Sole 24 Ore newspaper said Milan is seeking to occupy 750,000 square metres of land, a large part of which is owned by Snaitech. The betting and gaming company has already signed sales agreements with entrepreneur Federico Consolandi, but he is said to be ready to sell it to Milan, forgoing real estate investments he had originally planned. However, the proposed site also partly occupies an area classed as parkland.

Earlier this month, Milan set out its commitment to build the “most beautiful, modern and functional stadium in the world”, citing Tottenham Hotspur Stadium as an inspiration and the need to close the gap to the likes of the English Premier League in the matchday revenue stakes.

Milan’s lengthy statement on the matter, came amid significant developments in recent weeks over the intended Nuovo Stadio Milano project it had been engaged in with Serie A rival Inter Milan.

Milan has reportedly appointed the CAA Icon agency to support its efforts as it considers building a new stadium without its cross-city rival. CAA Icon will assist Milan as the club gauges fan opinion on a new stadium, with the two parties having launched a survey to better understand fans’ match-day habits and preferences.

It was initially reported last month that Milan, under its new US ownership group, had elected to split from Inter and pursue its own stadium project. The two clubs have been working on the joint Nuovo Stadio Milan project, but ongoing delays concerning this venture have prompted both to reassess their options.

The new joint stadium is intended to be built on the same plot of land occupied by the two clubs’ current home, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, more commonly known as the San Siro.