Liverpool get go-ahead for Anfield expansion
The Liverpool City Council have given Liverpool the green light to carry out the first phase of their plans to expand Anfield.
The first expansion will see work done on to add 8,500 seats to the iconic ground's Main Stand, taking the stadium's capacity to 54,000 - past the minimum 50,000 required by Uefa to host major international and European games.
Construction will begin next year with the club expecting to complete the works in time for the 2016/17 season before embarking on a second phase of construction that will add another 4,800 seats to the Anfield Road end. No time scale has been announced for the second phase.
Speaking to the club's official website, Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre said: "Today's approval by the Planning Committee is another step on our journey which we embarked on nearly two years ago.
"We received very positive support for our proposals during a public consultation exercise earlier this year and while we are delighted about the progress made today, there are still some steps that we need to navigate through in order to give us the certainty that we need to proceed with our expansion plans."
The expansion plans will allow Liverpool to compete better in terms of match day revenue with their English Premier League rivals like Manchester United, whose Old Trafford ground has a capacity of 75,000, and the 60,000-seater Emirates Stadium of Arsenal.
The BBC reported that the expansion plans will cost £100 million ($207.8m).
Sources: Reuters, BBC