Real Madrid’s plans to remodel the Bernabeu have received a blow after the local Madrid court blocked all work on the project.
The court ruled that the development was outside the Spanish capital’s planning regulations.
An official announcement on the Real Madrid website read:
“The High Court of Madrid has overturned the Agreement from 15 November 2012, issued by the Community of Madrid’s Governing Council, which approved the Specific Modification of the Madrid General Development Plan, a decision that affects the Santiago Bernabéu.
Following this ruling, Real Madrid C. F. will work with the City Council and the Community of Madrid to address those aspects that require attention in order to make the Santiago Bernabéu reform project viable.”
The remodelling project, announced in the 2012 AGM, was supposed to include a futuristic new design of the Bernabeu and a hotel complex between the stadium and the nearby tree-lined Paseo de la Castellana. Work on the project was supposed to begin in 2015, with the construction of the new-look stadium to be completed by 2017.
Last October, club president Florentino Perez announced that the Abu Dhabi-based International Petroleum Investment Company were to provide funding for the project. Later, Perez was also caught on camera suggesting that the stadium might be renamed as IPIC Bernabeu or Cepsa Bernabeu. However, recent reports also suggest that Abu Dhabi Bernabeu is also an option being considered.
But it now seems like the plan may not materialize after all, as a Madrid court cancelled a 2012 change to the city’s urban plan. This cancellation is proving to be the barrier for Real Madrid, as their plans have been challenged by local environmentalists.
Real Madrid’s statement suggests that the club authorities will not give up on their plans easily. However, the club might have to re-work their current plan and make changes to please the Madrid court and get the clearance to proceed with the project.
According to Spanish daily, Real Madrid might have to bid adieu to their ambitious project. A picture posted on their twitter page read: ‘Goodbye New Bernabeu’.
— AS (@diarioas) February 11, 2015
However, some reports claim that Real Madrid have a plan-B in place. According to the reports, the plan will include construction of a new stadium on the outskirts of Madrid, close to the club’s Valdebebas training ground.