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St James’ Park renovation: Club make decision on stadium plans

Newcastle United have reportedly made a final decision on the future of St James' Park after completing a feasibility report. Since the club were purchased by the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) in 2021, a new stadium has been on the agenda for the club but bosses have been torn on whether to renovate St James' Park or build a new stadium.

Last year, the club confirmed that they were undertaking a feasibility study to figure out the costs of renovating St James' Park against the costs of moving home.

St James' Park renovation
Newcastle have reportedly made a final decision on St James' Park – Photo by Icon Sport

As part of the feasibility study, the club wanted to figure out which stands at the current stadium could be expanded and at what cost. They were also considering tearing down the stadium completely for a brand-new rebuild on the same site or moving to a new site on the banks of the River Tyne.

Due to the connection the current stadium has with the club's supporters, the preference has always been to renovate St James' Park and bosses have now reportedly agreed that will be the direction they go in after completing the study.

St James' Park renovation: What's planned

According to the Telegraph, the club don't plan on publishing the blueprints for the expansion any time soon, however, they intend on increasing the capacity at St James' Park to over 60,000. Modern facilities will also be built on the inside and outside of the stadium to make it one of the most impressive arenas in European football.

Before the work can commence, Newcastle will need to extend their current lease at the stadium. At present, the lease has around 70 years left to run but the owners want this extension before investing hundreds of millions of pounds into the project.

Providing the lease does get extended, then work should commence fairly quickly with PIF ready to go with the funds. The current capacity of St James' Park is 52,000 and the bulk of the increase will come through extending the Gallowgate End so that it matches the height of the Milburn and Leazes Stands.

The club will be unable to do much with the East Stand due to the historically listed buildings around the back of it. This means that the lopsided aesthetic of the stadium will remain in part, but many supporters feel that this adds to the charm of the ground.

Newcastle fans rejoice at St James' Park news

The news has gone down well with Newcastle fans who always wanted to the club to remain at their spiritual home. One Newcastle fan posted on X: “There’s no place on earth I have more emotional attachment to than this place. I’d have been inconsolable for it to go and be replaced by a soulless bowl – it’s more than just bricks and mortar. There’s no Newcastle without St James’ Park.”

Another said: “I was never of the opinion that Newcastle should leave St James' Park. Super stadiums? Nah. Retaining a huge part of Newcastle United's identity was indescribably important. It's our home. The heart of the club and city. Always will be. Any expansion is welcome. But leave? Never.”

A third added: “From the reaction from fans today I think we can all agree staying at St James Park is the right call. Perfect location.”


Andy Delaney

Andy is a freelance sports writer with ten years of experience covering major sporting events across Europe. He has also been a season ticket holder at Old Trafford since 2008 and has visited over 40 football stadiums in the United Kingdom and abroad following the Reds.

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