by Housesimple on 27th June 2018
You may think that a season ticket is the pinnacle of sports fandom, but what about living in an actual stadium? This isn’t camping out to score tickets — there’s a new trend in property that is turning stadiums into homes. Stadium-residential conversations allow developers to provide new homes on a massive scale — and allowing the spirit of landmark stadiums to live on.
For example, Upton Gardens in Newham was once home to the famous West Ham United Football Club — and now is offering 842 new homes, as well as a public library. Updating these huge spaces to provide new housing is helping regenerate neglected areas and, in some cases, is even part of a planning requirement for new stadiums. Here's what you need to know.
Respecting The Foundations
Many of the conversations seek to maintain the integrity of the stadium's architecture, even while developing modern, convenient living spaces. It’s common to see areas like The Highbury Square complex, which has taken the layout of the original space into consideration when drafting the new layout. “Highbury Square transforms an early and important example of a British football stadium, previously the home of Arsenal Football Club, into a residential community,” the website explains. “It preserves the nature and memory of the original arena while developing a new residential typology which contributes to the rich, local grain of streets, avenues, and squares.” Although obviously nobody wants to live in rows of stadium seats, architects and developers are doing exciting things with the existing space.
And it’s not just football stadiums that are going through these transformations. Walthamstow Dog track has been renovated to include hundreds of new homes. As the market becomes more competitive and space comes at more of a premium, expect to see increasingly creative conversations — especially at the outskirts of major cities.
An Exciting Regeneration
There’s a reason these renovations are so exciting — and not just for football fans. More and more, stadiums and housing are becoming synonymous, not just in terms of renovating old stadiums, but also when building new ones. Many planning requirements for new stadiums also include a housing component — like Arsenal’s new Emirates stadium which was required to include a huge amount of new housing surrounding the arena, as part of the planning requirement
Often these stadium-housing combinations are being used to regenerate areas that have been neglected. Brentford FC is a perfect example. The club is in the middle of building a huge new 17,250-seater stadium near Kew Bridge. Though this an exciting development in and of itself, it’s actually taking place as part of a broader regeneration programme for the area. Crucially, that generation will also see 910 homes built just minutes away from the stadium. And this is happening more and more, giving an interesting opportunity for buyers. The new home of the Tottenham Hotspurs, the White Hart Lane stadium, includes nearly 600 hundred onsite flats. One the one hand, this helps attract new residents and visitors to an area — but as a buyer, it gives you the chance to invest in an up-and-coming location. You can get in at the beginning of the regeneration process, when prices are lower and potential profits are larger.
Living in a football stadium may not be everybody’s dream — though from the recent World Cup frenzy, it’s clearly exactly that for many. But even if you’re not a fan, looking at stadium-residential conversations and regeneration plans around new stadiums is a good idea for a savvy home buyer. Whether you're looking to relocate or just trying to find a solid investment, areas that are being regenerated are often full of exciting possibilities. So next time you see a stadium on the rise, it’s worth looking into what’s happening around it — or even inside of it. You may stumble upon some exciting new housing options.
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