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Design & Development

Inter launches stadium consultation, San Siro breaks financial records

Images: Populous

Inter Milan has launched a fan consultation initiative related to its proposed move to a new 70,000-seat stadium in the municipality of Rozzano, while the Serie A club’s current home, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, has set record revenue and profit for the 2022-23 season.

In October, Inter offered a glimpse of life after the venue otherwise known as the San Siro by revealing initial concept images from Populous of a new 70,000-capacity stadium that it hopes will open ahead of the 2028-29 season.

In a speech to shareholders as Inter revealed record matchday revenues, CEO Alessandro Antonello said the delivery of a new stadium owned by Inter is “crucial” when it comes to achieving the club’s wider mid-to-long-term goals. The club is working on plans for a 70,000-seat stadium built on green space between Rozzano and Assago near the A7 motorway, which connects Milan and Genoa.

The land is currently owned by real estate groups Brioschi and Bastogi through a company called Infrafin. Inter has already secured the exclusive right to carry out a feasibility study into the potential development of a stadium on the site. The club has until the end of April 2024 to study the project. In September, initial plans were presented to the Mayors of Rozzano and the neighbouring municipality of Assago.

In a statement yesterday (Tuesday) launching the fan consultation, Inter said it remains “strongly committed” to the Rozzano project. The design process, officially started with the acquisition of the exclusive rights on the area of land owned by Infrafin, is continuing through the work of Populous and frequent meetings of the club’s senior management with the institutions and stakeholders involved.

Inter said: “The project will revolve around the ideas and needs of the fans. With this objective, a survey has been launched which will involve the entire Nerazzurri community. The collection of opinions, which begins with a survey dedicated to traffic issues, will continue in the coming months with further topics relating to the new Inter home.”

Speaking to Sky Italia, Antonello added: “We want to hear the voice of our supporters and understand from them how we should carry out and develop our project. Any news? There is none. We have this period of exclusivity and are working to understand if the project can be feasible.”

It also emerged in October that the Municipality of Milan had launched an appeal against a decision placing protected status on the Meazza, restrictions that effectively prevent any efforts to redevelop the venue.

The Municipality said it would present an appeal to the Regional Administrative Court (TAR) of Lombardy-Milan to secure an annulment of the opinion presented by the Archaeological, Fine Arts and Landscape Superintendence for the Metropolitan City of Milan on July 26, followed by another from the Regional Commission for the Cultural Heritage of Lombardy on July 27.

These related to the classification of the second tier of the Meazza, along with the west stand, as structures of cultural interest. A verdict was expected on the matter this month, but it was announced last week that it has been postponed until March.

Antonello added: “We are waiting to understand the outcome of the sentence that will be issued in March on the restriction, there is an open issue which is that of the referendum. But we are moving forward on the our main project, which is Rozzano.”

Commenting on the Rozzano vision, Declan Sharkey, senior principal and general manager of Populous Italy, said in a statement: “We are proud to be working with Inter on this incredible project and we share a joint aim of creating a state-of-the-art, sustainable stadium that the club and its fans will be proud to call home.”

European football boosts Meazza financials

Inter and its city rival, AC Milan, previously worked on a joint Nuovo Stadio Milan project on the site where the Meazza is located, but ongoing delays concerning this venture prompted both to reassess their options.

Milan in October reported its first profit in nearly two decades and record revenues of €404.5m (£350.1m/$443.2m), as the club disclosed that its owners had already invested €40m in advancing plans to deliver a new stadium in San Donato.

MI Stadio, the company owned by the two clubs to manage the Meazza, has now reported strong financial results for 2022-23, aided by revenue generated from the teams’ European campaigns. Inter lost in the final of the UEFA Champions League to Manchester City after knocking out its city rival in the semi-finals.

According to Calcio e Finanza, MI Stadio reported revenues of €27.1m for the year ending June 30, 2023, up from the previous year’s €19.8m. Meanwhile, profit stood at €3.6m, up from the prior year’s €1m.

This set a new benchmark for the stadium, eclipsing the revenue record of €23.6m set in 2015-16 and profit of €1.6m set in 2018-19.