QPR PONDER STADIUM FUTURE

Officials from Queens Park Rangers Football Club are considering the future of their stadium as they look build upon their first season back in the Premier League.

Rangers managed to avoid the drop and the club is keen on building a legacy that will ensure investment in the team for many years to come. The West London club currently plays at Loftus Road which has a capacity of just over 18,000 and sees this as a major disadvantage when compared to other venues of teams in the top flight.

Multi-millionaire Tony Fernandes bought the club last summer and immediately ordered the club to start planning for a move away from their home - the smallest ground in the Barclays Premier League. Chief executive Philip Beard wants a new stadium which brings in extra revenue from as many sources as possible.

"To have a stand-alone football stadium that only hosts 19 home domestic matches a season would probably not make the numbers work," Beard told the London Evening Standard. "What is important is that it is the home of QPR but it will need to have facilities to do other things as well. 

"A full-on ground-share is more challenging, but I am hoping to emulate an entertainment destination model where you roll the pitch away and use it for other things. Look at (Arsenal's) Emirates Stadium. They hosted Coldplay for three nights - that is the sort of activity you need to host to generate the revenues to make the club sustainable and ultimately invest in the team going forward."

However it may prove difficult to find a large space to build a stadium of up to 45,000, but Beard quickly allayed fears that the club be moving far away.

"The criteria is that we need to find somewhere that hopefully isn't too far from Loftus Road," he added. "Our fanbase is a very passionate, loyal and local one. We need to stay in the area if we can. That is almost a must."

 

Posted on 07/06/2012