Leeds stadium redevelopment plans consultation starts tonight

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A consultation over plans to transform Headingley Carnegie Stadium will launch tonight.

The plans include a new rugby South Stand and a replacement for the existing joint stand, which overlooks both sides of the complex.

Rhinos plan to sell two sites - off Weetwood Avenue, Weetwood and at Old Thorpe Lane, Tingley - for housing, with the net receipts being invested into Headingley stadium redevelopment.

Unlike previous proposals, the new rugby South Stand will include seats as well as a standing terrace.

Development work will see Rhinos’ capacity reduced to just over 13,000 - more than 2,500 below last year’s average - for a time during the 2017 Super League season.

The plans will be outlined at a series of exhibitions this, when members of the public will have an opportunity to talk to the design team and provide feedback.

The first consultation takes place tonight at The Bramley Room, at Weetwood Hall, between 4pm and 7pm.

A further consultation will be held at Woodkirk Valley Country Club tomorrow between 4pm and 7pm.

The public will also be given the chance to talk about the plans in the Carnegie Cafe Bar at Headingley Stadium on Wednesday and Thursday between 4pm and 7pm.

Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington said: “We have been working behind the scenes with Yorkshire County Cricket Club and Leeds City Council for many years and now the vision of a completely re-developed Headingley is a reality.

“For rugby fans, we will be providing significantly more comfort, with much better seating, yet retaining the uniqueness and character of our home.

“Our overall capacity will not increase, but that has never been our aim.

“We have a 90-year-old Main Stand and a South Stand that was condemned six years ago and is in constant need of repair.

“It will present a major construction challenge and inevitably cause some disruption for all teams during that period.

“Our stadium capacity will reduce to just over 13,000 for a period during the 2017 season, but we are determined to ensure all our ticketed members are guaranteed access to all games and that’s why the 2016 members will have priority for 2017.”

Hetherington added: “Headingley has been a wonderful asset of the city for 125 years with a worldwide reputation for sporting drama and excitement and this latest development is another great news story for Leeds and Yorkshire.”