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Populous’s Craven Cottage makeover approved

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Proposals by Populous for a major overhaul of Fulham Football Club’s Craven Cottage stadium have been approved by councillors

The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham’s planning and development control committee granted consent for the scheme to boost the arena’s capacity to 29,600.

The plans will see the existing Riverside Stand demolished and rebuilt, changes to the Putney and Hammersmith stands, and new lighting replacing the existing floodlights.

A riverside walkway will be extended, and there will be retail space and nine serviced apartments.

The club is currently third in the Championship League and pushing for a return to the Premier League. It has played at Craven Cottage since 1896 but attendance has soared this century.

Main works for the upgrade could start on site at the end of the 2018-19 season.

Fulham FC chairman Shahid Khan said: ‘Our goal for a brighter future for Fulham Football Club, the neighbourhood, our borough and all of London is now at our doorstep.’

KSS submitted plans in 2012 for changes to the stadium to bring capacity up to 30,000 seats.

This received planning permission in July 2013, just days before current chairman Shahid Khan completed his purchase of the club from Mohamed Al-Fayed.

The KSS permission was implemented in the summer of 2016 and remains valid. Heatherwick Studio was appointed by the club in April 2016 ‘to contribute its significant expertise to the proposed scheme’.

However, the club has since pushed through the Populous scheme, with an application submitted in late 2017 and approved this week.

Populous senior principal and project lead Nicholas Reynolds said: ’Fulham FC, in addition to the Fulham Supporters’ Trust and the wider local community, has been a fantastic group to work with, allowing Populous to design a new Riverside Stand that will be a great neighbour and an amazing place to watch football.

’The new stand combines a spectacular viewpoint for Fulham fans with new experiences including restaurants, cafés, bars and pop-ups that will make the most of Craven Cottage’s wonderful riverside location.’

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