HOK Sport+Event+Venue's plan for a new 55,000-seater stadium for Everton Football Club has been written off by its chief backer, regeneration firm Liverpool Vision.
The club has failed to raise its share of the cash for the £155 million scheme planned for Liverpool Vision's King's Dock site, and the regeneration firm has removed Everton's status as preferred bidder. It will now investigate alternative schemes to provide the conference centre and regeneration initially promised by Everton.
A source close to Liverpool Vision told the AJ that the club had failed to find the cash in time for a New Year deadline and was no longer being taken seriously as a bidder.
He added that since losing preferred bidder status, Everton has attempted again to raise the money for the stadium from banks and financial institutions, but that the club remained 'a very unlikely long shot for the project'.
'It looks very much like Everton will fail to get the necessary funds together, ' he said. 'It will never match the financial guarantees we need.'
But Ian Ross, the club's head of corporate communications, said claims that the scheme is dead are 'complete nonsense', adding: 'It is completely untrue. We have promised our supporters a new and unique stadium. It is that or nothing.'