AS Roma unveils new stadium design

Plans for new Rome stadium step up a gear

Italian Serie A football team AS Roma has unveiled the designs for its new state-of-the-art stadium in Rome which it hopes will be ready in time for the team's 2016-2017 season.

The €300-million stadium will be privately financed and its three-tiered design by California-based architect Dan Meis is inspired by the Colosseum. It will be located in the southwest Rome district of Tor di Valle and will have the capacity to seat 52,500 spectators, extending to 60,000 for major matches.

The facility will become the dedicated home for AS Roma which was founded in 1927 and which has shared Stadio Olimpico with city rivals Lazio since 1960. The reason for the club's move is to have a purpose-built stadium that offers its players better facilities and provides the fans with a more intimate view of the game, minus the running track that surrounds the pitch at the Stadio Olimpico, which was rebuilt at huge expense for the 1990 World Cup.

The driving force behind the "world-class" stadium is the AS Roma president, the Italo-American hedge fund manager Jim Pallotta who acquired the team in December 2011. Pallotta hopes that AS Roma will have "an expedited process and a two-year construction plan," adding that he wanted the team's captain Francesco Totti to be "the first person to run out on that pitch." Pallotta also believes that the new state-of-the-art stadium will give his club a “competitive advantage.” The project is supported by the mayor Rome Ignazio Marino although he warned that it would not open until the required surrounding infrastructure was installed.

The stadium has been designed specifically for football, with seating as close as possible to the pitch, as well as a 14,000-seat detached section behind one of the goals for the hard-core "ultra" supporters, replacing the Curva Sud from the Stadio Olimpico.

There will also be luxury boxes, commercial areas and external training grounds. Currently referred to as "Stadio della Roma" until its naming rights are finalised, the project's construction will be financed by bank loans and equity, while once it is up-and-running the stadium will be financed through naming rights, sponsors and priority seating proceeds. Totti http://www.wantedinrome.com/news/2002923/giant-mural-of-totti-appears-in-rome.html