Selhurst Park’s redevelopment does not depend on the club staying in the Premier League, chairman Steve Parish said today.
Palace on Monday announced plans to build a new main stand that will expand the capacity of their stadium to more than 34,000 and could cost up to £100million.
Plans will be submitted to Croydon Council in January and, subject to permission being granted, work will begin late next year even if the club is relegated to the Championship.
Parish and American co-owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer have committed to redeveloping Selhurst Park and the project will go ahead whether or not Palace stay in the top flight.
“Obviously, it would have an impact but we spend most of our money on transfer fees and wages, so it is not like the Premier League gives you a load of riches that you can spend on your stadium. So there are challenges to financing it whatever division you are in.”
The ambitious project, which is set to take three years to complete, will not impact on the money available for manager Roy Hodgson to spend in the January transfer window.
The stadium plans include premium hospitality and entertainment facilities for more than 2,500 supporters, but Parish said maintaining a good atmosphere at Selhurst Park was central to the redevelopment.
“This club will never be about the prawn-sandwich brigade and we have got to get that right,” he said. “But you need something for everybody and we want to make it relevant in the 21st century to the kind of experience people want.
“We want to leverage the London-based, high-end supporter and then put in as much general admission as we can and keep the cost low for the normal supporter.
“We have got a sensational atmosphere at this club. And maintaining that has led us to this design.
“We are not being over-ambitious about the corporate support we want. It is really about the new general admission and enhancing that atmosphere, joining it with the Holmesdale Road and creating a bowl to make sure the atmosphere does not get lost.”
Hodgson said: “It is up to us to try and make certain we stay in the Premier League and that when the new stadium is opened, it is opened by a Premier League club.”
Source: Evening Standard