FILE PHOTOS: Soccer Football – Serie A – AC Milan v Genoa – San Siro, Milan, Italy – March 8, 2020 Public display outside the stadium before the match is played in private by spectators as the number of corona virus cases grows worldwide REUTERS / Daniele Mascolo / Photo File
MILAN (Reuters) – Italian relic authorities have no objection to destroying the 1920s San Siro arena in Milan, a document seen by Reuters, removing a major obstacle for the city’s top football clubs that plan to replace it with a new stadium.
The AC Milan and Inter Milan Serie A clubs are each owned by U.S. funds. Elliott and Chinese electronics retailer Suning, submitted a request last year to jointly build a new 60,000-seat stadium in the San Siro area.
The new stadium is a key element in the 1.2 billion euro ($ 1.31 billion) real estate plan for the wider district, which includes the destruction of almost all of the historic San Siro arena, the home ground of the city’s two top clubs.
Although approval from the inheritance authority is not a final decision, this is an important step towards implementing the plan.
In the opinion of the authorities to the city of Milan which owns the site, the arena has no architectural significance that will prevent its demolition. After some rebuilding, only a small remnant of the stadium’s oldest section, built in 1926, remains.
Clubs and municipalities have been in talks for months to try to find a compromise over plans to replace a century-old arena, sometimes dubbed “La Scala del Calcio” – a reference to Milan’s famous opera house.
City representatives, including Milan mayor Giuseppe Sala, have repeatedly questioned plans to destroy the San Siro and the club has modified an initial project that will ruin the entire stadium.
The plan under discussion includes destroying most of the old arena but making it part of a kind of city landmark where clubs will build new publicly available sports facilities.
($ 1 = 0.9127 euros)
Reporting by Elvira Pollina, edited by Ed Osmond