QPR could be set to leave Loftus Road, their home of more than 100 years, as plans have been drawn up to build a new 45,000 seater stadium for the west London club.
The proposal, as revealed by Sportsmail, would be part of a £425m development project by the Hammersmith and Fulham city council with the new stadium, built on the site of the Linfield Christie Athletics Stadium, dwarfing the current 18,439 person capacity of Loftus Road.
A stadium capacity of 45,000 would place QPR eighth on a list of largest Premier League stadiums, ahead of Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge.
The proposal outlines four possible options for a new stadium ranging from ‘up to 35,000’ to 45,000 in capacity. The biggest and most expensive of the options would cost £425m but includes a state-of-the-art pitch that could be lifted to become a roof for non-football commitments.
Cheaper options proposed are a 42,000 capacity ground costing £350m and a 35,000 capacity stadium costing £317m.
The fourth option is somewhat more of a mystery, with the proposal outlining costs of £70m to build a stadium capacity of ‘up to 35,000’. In each of the three more expensive options, the council would front the expenses with QPR given a long term lease, but the fourth option would require QPR, ‘the occupiers,’ to pay for the £70m development.
The council’s proposal will come as a surprise to many after recently claiming that they wouldn’t ‘give away land for free’.
The new stadium is seen as the focal point for large-scale redevelopment of the area with a new athletics track and stand next to the stadium, hockey facilities, a skate park, and other sports and leisure facilities to be built on the site.
The next step will be for QPR and the council to gauge public perception with QPR CEO Lee Hoos stating: “The Council is shortly to launch a public consultation on the future of the Linford Christie site, which we will encourage our fanbase, local residents and stakeholders to take part in.”