Barcelona have unveiled designs for the revamp of the Camp Nou stadium.
The European champions’ new home, designed by architectural team Nikken Sekkei + Pascual i Ausio Arquitectes, is due to be opened in time for the 2021-22 season.
Camp Nou will have open “facades” constructed around the exterior to allow spectators to walk around the entire stadium, which will extend up to the top tier of the stands. A partial roof will be added and the capacity is set to be expanded to over 100,000.
Speaking at a ceremony at the stadium, attended by Barca board members, the first-team squad and media representatives, president Josep Maria Bartomeu said he believes the new stadium will become “an icon for the city”.
“We are proud to present the winning proposal for the new Camp Nou,” he said. “Many submissions were from the best architectural firms in the world. I want to thank all of them.
“I want to thank the work of the jury as well. They put in an awful lot of hours. It’s been a job well done.
“Other clubs have built better and more modern stadiums, with new technologies. This is why there have been projects in the last 20 years to improve Camp Nou, though for different reasons these could not move forward.
“Forty per cent of Camp Nou has not been touched since it was built. A club such as ours should have the best arena in the world. I believe this new Camp Nou will be an icon for the city, one of the most beautiful cities in the world.”
Bartomeu confirmed the club will seek sponsorship, including possible naming rights, as they will not begin work on the stadium unless backing is established and the club’s debt is reduced to projected levels.
Club captain Andres Iniesta, who unveiled the stadium model along with team-mates Lionel Messi, Sergio Busquets and Javier Mascherano, says the rejuvenated Camp Nou will be a one-of-a-kind location in world football.
Construction is due to begin in 2017.