AFC lodge plans for multi-million pound football and community sports hub

Detailed plans for the creation of a major, multi-million pound football and community sports hub for the north-east of Scotland have been lodged by Aberdeen FC Community Trust and Aberdeen Football Club Plc.

The planning application to Aberdeen City Council for the 24.5 hectare site at Kingsford includes community and sports facilities; a football academy comprising outdoor pitches, pavilion and ancillary buildings; and a 20,000-seat capacity stadium along with associated access roads, parking, landscaping and engineering works.

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Subject to planning approval, the proposals will see more than £40 million invested to create a new home for the Dons; provide a base for the significant expansion of the award-winning work of Aberdeen FC Community Trust on social inclusion, participation in sport and healthy lifestyles for all ages across the region; and create a focal point for footballing excellence in the north of Scotland.

The project would be delivered in two phases, with the community and sports facilities and football academy constructed first and the stadium in the second phase.

The restrictions of the Club’s no longer fit for purpose Pittodrie Stadium site, including the inability to develop co-located and dedicated training facilities, are an increasing barrier to its sustainable future.

George Yule, Executive Vice Chairman of Aberdeen Football Club, said: “Our vision is to deliver essential community and training facilities and a new stadium, which will collectively support the ambitions of the Community Trust, Club and fans. This will create a focal point for footballing excellence and public participation in sport. This project is fundamental for the future of the Community Trust and the Club, and for maximising the benefits they can deliver for the city and region.

“The Club ensures this region is profiled nationally and internationally and has further plans to enhance its reputation as a visionary organisation, competing successfully in domestic and European completion, with best in class facilities for our supporters, staff and players at all ages. We cannot deliver this vision and provide a positive role model for young people without new facilities.

“Our extensive consultation during 2016 has informed the preparation of the detailed planning application. Our proposals are both workable and deliverable. This catalytic development will deliver in sporting, social and economic terms for our stakeholders and we look forward to it being considered on its merits via the statutory planning process,” said Mr Yule.

Duncan Skinner, Chairman of Aberdeen FC Community Trust, said: “The Community Trust provides support and opportunity for people of all ages, and often to those in greatest need of a helping hand. Working in partnership with the Club, charities and public sector organisations, and our supporters, we deliver award-winning inclusion, health and wellbeing programmes. The Trust cannot increase the scope of its work without dedicated facilities and this development would enable it to extend its positive impact in the region and create new ways of engaging with multiple stakeholder groups.”

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