Mayor of London Boris Johnson is on the brink of offering Tottenham Hotspur FC £8.5 million to remain in the north London area following the recent riots
The news comes just days after Tottenham was granted a judicial review to block West Ham’s move to the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, east London. With Spurs still holding out for its own move to the London 2012 centrepiece, the club is desperately trying to stop West Ham’s already approved relocation from Upton Park to the stadium and is disputing a £40 million public money loan to fund the deal.
That hearing is due to start on 18 October. However it is understood the Premiership giants are now close to an agreement with the Mayor that would instead see Spurs re-focus on redeveloping its current home ground at White Hart Lane. The so-called Northumberland Development Project would become the focal point of a multi-million pound regeneration package intended to subsidise the wider area affected by this month’s riots.
The investment could come from Johnson’s £50 million fund pledged to redevelop riot-struck areas with £20 million being specifically invested in Tottenham and Croydon.
Spurs’ original plans to redevelop their current ground, designed by Make, was put on ice due to planning complications and rising costs (see below). Last year the club turned its attentions to the ‘more viable option’ of taking over the 2012 Stadium site after the Games.
But Championship side West Ham won the decision to move into the Olympic Stadium, pledgeing to retain the legacy of the athletics track.
Previous story (AJ 26.01.11)
Make’s Spurs scheme ‘not dead’ despite viability fears
Insiders insist the £450 million proposals to overhaul Tottenham Hotspurs’ current White Hart Lane ground are ‘not dead’ despite renewed claims by the chairman the plans are ‘not viable’
The club is currently waiting to hear whether it has been successful in a bid to take over the Olympic Stadium - a cheaper option for the North London football club than its proposed Northumberland Development Project (NDP) designed by Make and KSS.
However yesterday club chairman David Levy suggested Spurs may look at moving from White Hart Lane even if its Stratford bid fails.
Speaking to Sky Sports News he said: ‘The problem with the situation we’re in now at White Hart Lane is that the project currently is not viable, so we would have to go back to the drawing board and that would obviously mean looking at other locations again.’
The NDP scheme rocketed in price following a substantial redesign - carried out mainly to appease English Heritage - which will see a number of historic buildings retained. As a result, it is understood, the revenue income from the reduced amount of enabling development has dropped.
Yet sources say the NDP has not been canned and will potentially be re-looked at should the club’s Olympic 2012 Stadium bid fail.
According to reports Spurs is currently in pole position to beat a rival proposal by West Ham for the Olympic centrepiece, even though it would not retain athletics facilities on the site.