At a different scale, Brentford’s regeneration is being helped by the football club’s new stadium, said Sally Stephens, fan and community relations director, a major upgrade on its old, cramped facilities at Gryphon Park less than a mile away. The new stadium has a 17,250 capacity and is surrounded by four development areas on which homes, a new public square and commercial elements will be built, as well as a new green route from the Thames.
The event also heard from Cllr Stephen Alambritis, former leader of LB Merton on Wimbledon FC’s return, Shaun Dawson of the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, who widened the debate to the future of sports and leisure services at borough level, expressing some concern about the ability of local authorities to continue to provide these without more support from government or major sporting bodies, and Tom Jones, senior principal, London at Populous, who is responsible for having designed both the Emirates and Spurs’ new stadium. Twenty years ago, said Jones, people didn’t want stadiums in cities, with a drive to develop them on the periphery. ‘Now I think Tottenham epitomises the strength of what a stadium regeneration project can bring to its community. And it’s just amazing to see’.
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