Angus Kinnear reveals Leeds United's redevelopment plans for Elland Road
The Whites' chief has discussed the potential redevelopment of Elland Road.
Angus Kinnear has detailed plans for Leeds United to redevelop Elland Road to a 50,000 capacity following promotion to the Premier League.
The Whites’ chief executive announced last October during the centenary celebrations that proposals were in place for the club’s home ground to undergo building work upon achieving top-flight status.
United secured the Championship title last month under Marcelo Bielsa’s guidance and are now preparing for a first term in England’s elite since the club suffered relegation in 2004.
Leeds have since been granted planning permission by Leeds City Council to build a community sports hub on Fullerton Park – which sits opposite the stadium – as part of the ongoing expansion plans.
The project will include artificial grass football pitches, including one covered by an air dome, along with changing rooms, a cafe, meeting rooms, a gym, GP surgery and pharmacy for use by Beeston and Holbeck residents.
Kinnear, though, has now discussed the potential future redevelopment inside Elland Road’s four walls after United earned a spot in the Premier League last month - but did concede that any plans would be for when top flight status had been sustained over a period of time.
“Redeveloping the West Stand can take the capacity up to 50,000,” he told The Square Ball podcast.
“That’s what I think is a very achievable level for Leeds United to ensure you’re always sold out. That’s the key. You want to make sure, even for smaller games, you’re sold out.
“We’ve now started to formalise the plans for how do you redevelop that stand while you have to do it within a season, so how do you manage your capacity and keep your capacity high during that time?
“There are ways that can be achieved so you’re not losing too many seats. It would also be about professionalising the whole of that side of the ground.
"Ultimately, the changing rooms on that side haven’t changed, the referee’s facilities, the media facilities, they are all outdated.
“We’ve got seats in the upper tier of the West Stand which have restricted views because there’s pillars in the way.
“The press areas aren’t big enough for the Premier League, the floodlights aren’t bright enough for the Premier League.
“So, not only will we be able to get 15,000 more supporters in the stadium, but we’ll also be able to make it more professional and get that functional environment for the first team on a matchday as well.”
Kinnear also revealed that the waiting list for season tickets was nearing the 20,000 mark while a further 6,000 new memberships had been sold since they went on general sale last week.
“It feels like how it should be,” he added.
“Arsenal have got a waiting list, West Ham have got a waiting list.
“We should have a bigger stadium, the stadium should be at 50,000 and that is a further part of our plans.
“What’s also great is you have the hardcore fanbase, but it’s also great for the city. We want people to walk through the city and feel proud about what’s happened and what they’re part of.”