QPR1st Supporters’ Trust representatives were pleased to have the opportunity to discuss the proposals for the new stadium with the Alan Sendorek, Head of Strategy, QPR Property.
The meeting was a positive step forward in establishing effective dialogue between the club and the supporters’ trust.
Club CEO Lee Hoos has said there has been a great deal of work going on in relation to proposals for the new stadium. Alan was able to say something about what that work involves. As well as discussions with the planning authorities, this includes working with education projects and talking to the NHS, among others on how the new stadium could make a real difference to local people. That could mean facilities to support local health services, educational facilities and a wide range of other projects to support local people.
The club has been looking at, and learning from, how some other football clubs in this country and elsewhere – from Preston North End to Ajax – have been developing ambitious and innovative initiatives, particularly in health and education, to make sure they are a valued part of the community. Working with the community to provide new multifunctional stadium with community and educational facilities would also allow the QPR in the Community Trust to
do even more.
We strongly support an approach in the club to win over residents in the neighbouring area and the planners by describing how facilities in the new stadium will build on QPR in the Community’s proven track record in delivering on community projects. We think their ideas on community development are important and we would welcome further dialogue with the Club on this matter.
It was made clear to us that it would be a football stadium – not a compromise entertainment venue – but that it would be multifunctional in offering a range of provision for the community.
Separately, it has become clear that there are significant problems for the overall Old Oak regeneration project, as raised by architect Terry Farrell in the Evening Standard: http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/old-oak-common-regeneration-scheme-risks-being-londons-worst-cockup-in-50-years-a3194581.html
The problems he raises are with the area to the south of where Car Giant wants to develop and where the club hopes to build the stadium, but they affect vital road links in to that area. It will be down to the new Mayor of London, to be elected on 5 May, to get the project moving; otherwise progress may be very slow. Both leading candidates have been briefed by the club.
The question of stadium ownership remains an issue and we will continue to press the club for a statement making it clear that this will be the QPR stadium, and the club will not be a mere tenant in a stadium owned by others.
We do not want the club to be a mere tenant in a stadium, and we want this issue to be clarified. But we also believe a well-managed football stadium, providing services for the local community could be something we could all be proud of.
Both Car Giant and QPR have important land holdings in the regeneration area and the planners and politicians who will make the decisions on what will go on to that land are still there to be influenced.
We support the club is asking supporters to make their support known to the Old Oak regeneration planners. They explain how here http://www.qpr.co.uk/news/article/qpr-new-stadium-support-form-3000872.aspx
Those who have already filled in this form are also being asked by the club to send individual comments to the planners on how a QPR stadium can benefit the area. We think their ideas on community development are an important part of this.