Belfast Telegraph

Spurs reveal Olympic stadium plans

Tottenham on Wednesday launched a targeted assault on West Ham's bid for the Olympic Stadium as they finally broke their silence on their own plans to take over the site.

Spurs confirmed they would demolish most of the 80,000-seater athletics arena and replace it with a 60,000-capacity purpose-built football venue if they won the bid and decided to relocate from White Hart Lane.

As expected, the club said they would also revamp the Crystal Palace athletics stadium to fulfil the legacy commitment made when Great Britain was awarded the 2012 Games.

West Ham have long been favourites to take over the Olympic Stadium after next year's Paralympics, with their bid backed by both London 2012 chairman Lord Coe and UK Athletics.

The Hammers have waged a very public campaign, while Spurs have been conspicuous only by their absence from the debate.

That changed in dramatic fashion on Wednesday, just over two weeks before the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC) select their preferred bidder and less than two months before the final decision.

Spurs' architect and club vice-president David Keirle hit out at the myths and misinformation that have been circulated over the north Londoners' plans for the site, saying: "The debate, such as it is, has been one-sided because we've not entered into this.

"It's been very ill-informed."

Keirle, chairman of leading architects KSS, criticised West Ham's plans to retain the Olympic Stadium at a reduced capacity of 60,000, claiming they risked turning it into something of a white elephant.

"There'd be nothing worse than, five years down the line, for a failing club not being able to meet its obligations because it's not getting 60,000, fans saying there's no atmosphere," he said, pointing out numerous problems with football being played in athletics stadia.


From Belfast Telegraph