Real Madrid hopes that a 525€ million Bernabeu renovation will give them ‘best stadium in the world.
Spanish football giant Real Madrid’s general assembly has voted in favour of putting the club 525€ million into debt in order to fund the remodelling of the Santiago Bernabeu.
Out of 1,017 voting members, only 57 voted against the new stadium after club president Florentino Perez promised that the new stadium would generate 150€ million a year in additional revenue.
The existing stadium will be wrapped in “a layer of steel bands and varying lines that will be lit up and will also project images,” Perez said. It will also include a roof that covers the pitch, which means the covering of seats from the elements.
There will two additional stores in the surrounding areas of the stadium, with 300€ million of the money going toward work around the stadium along with “digital points of sale of the most prestigious electronics and consumer brands [that will] turn public areas into a showcase for global news.”
The financial matters
Madrid’s 525€ million debt will be paid off at a fixed rate of interest over 35 years, according to Perez. “This is an opportunity that should not be missed,” he said. With the club in a healthy position financially, including an 11% average increase in revenue since 2000, they are in a good position to take on the debt.
“Our current situation, of great economic safety, makes the club ready to tackle one of its greatest challenges: to turn the Santiago Bernabeu stadium into the best stadium in the world,” Perez told the assembly.
Around 100€ million will be utilised to help the Bernabeu take advantage of advances in digital technology, which “will be one of the essential features of the project,” Perez said. To enliven the stadium experience, a 360-degree video scoreboard will be built, as well as a separate space inside the stadium for e-sports.
“There will be a spectacular expansion of the current museum in the area of Castellana with much more floor area, and a new interactive museum will be created with the latest virtual reality technologies in the area of Padre Damian,” Perez said.
Real Madrid is hoping to get permission to begin renovations in 2019 and will start construction soon after, Perez said. He estimated it will take around three and a half years and does not believe the construction will affect the sporting calendar.