Design & Development

Murcia sets out stadium expansion plan for Spain’s World Cup bid

Featured image credit: Murcia City Council

Murcia has become the latest Spanish city to present stadium redevelopment plans in an effort to secure a place in the country’s joint bid with Portugal and Morocco for the 2030 FIFA World Cup.

The Estadio Enrique Roca de Murcia is owned by Murcia City Council and opened in 2006 as the new home of Real Murcia, currently playing in the Primera División RFEF, the third tier of the domestic game.

The stadium currently has a capacity of 31,000, but this will be enhanced significantly through plans presented by the Council yesterday (Thursday). The preliminary project foresees a three-stage process, commencing with general renovation work to the stadium in the first phase.

The second phase would see the stadium expanded to a capacity of 45,179 through the addition of a third tier of seating. The final phase would focus on exterior work, particularly enhancing parking provisions at the venue.

In addition, stadium lighting will be upgraded to meet the standards of world football’s governing body, while a 6,000 m2 photovoltaic solar installation is also proposed in order to guarantee that 75% of the total power consumed comes from renewable sources.

Pedro García Rex, Councillor for Sports, said, according to local newspaper La Verdad: “The work meets all the requirements of the RFEF (Spanish Football Federation) to be able to host it (the World Cup). 

“It also helps Real Murcia. We wanted to provide these facilities so the stadium can be an important destination for holding all kinds of events in the coming years.”

The project has been set with a maximum budget of €70m (£61.1m/$77m). José Antonio Serrano Martínez, Mayor of Murcia, has indicated he would like to see it proceed, regardless of whether World Cup games are secured.

He said: “I would like this project to be done… it is good for the city because it would allow all kinds of activities to be held that generate tourism and income.”

Murcia’s proposal comes after Malaga City Council, Malaga Provincial Council and the Regional Government of Andalucía last month detailed plans for a reimagined La Rosaleda. The stadium has a current capacity of 30,044 and the redeveloped venue would hold up to 45,000 fans.

In March, King Mohammed VI of Morocco announced that his country had joined Spain and Portugal’s bid to host the 2030 World Cup. The RFEF in July revealed a shortlist of 15 Spanish venues that are seeking to stage matches. At the time it was stated that 11 venues in Spain will ultimately be used if the joint bid is successful. A further three stadiums will be used in Portugal.

Along with Estadio Enrique Roca de Murcia and La Rosaleda, the other Spanish stadiums shortlisted are: El Molinón (Gijón), Balaídos (Vigo), Riazor (La Coruña), San Mamés (Bilbao), Anoeta (San Sebastián), La Romareda (Zaragoza), Camp Nou (Barcelona), RCDE Stadium (Cornellá-El Prat), Santiago Bernabéu and Wanda Metropolitano (both Madrid), Nuevo Mestalla (Valencia), La Cartuja (Sevilla-Santiponce), and Gran Canaria (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria).

It is unclear when the RFEF will decide on a final list of venues, but a final bid dossier needs to be delivered to FIFA in April 2024.