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Snell's Craven images

Snell Associates is the favoured architect for the replacement of Fulham fc's Craven Cottage home in west London with an expanded stadium, in line with the club's aspirations to the Premier League. Neil Rodford, managing director of the second-division leader, said that the cost of the scheme, which would bring the capacity to 30-35,000, is 'a bit frightening'.

The new building, on the existing footprint, incorporates two listed buildings - the Stevenage Road and Craven Cottage stands. The club originally approached three practices, but has eliminated one, leaving Snell as the clear favourite. It expects to submit an application for planning permission in June or July.

There is an existing planning permission for a redevelopment with seating for 15,000, and 140 apartments. The new scheme following the club's acquisition by Mohammed al Fayed 18 months ago, is entirely different but, said Rodford, 'there is still potential for residential property'.

The project is difficult because the site is contained by the Thames, a public park and housing. Ove Arup is the engineer.

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