CRYSTAL PALACE have been given the green light to increase Selhurst Park’s capacity to more than 34,000.
Eagles bosses have had a successful planning application to redevelop the Main Stand, which hosts the dugouts, dressing rooms and TV camera gantry.
Croydon Council reviewed the four-year-old proposals and it was approved unanimously by councillors.
It now goes to the Mayor of London’s Office where it is expected to be formally rubber-stamped.
Capacity in the new three-tiered, all-grass fronted stand in South London will increase from about 5,200 to an improved 13,500.
This will allow the club to have premium hospitality and entertainment facilities at Selhurst Park for more than 2,500 supporters.
Construction will also see an increase in the pitch dimensions to make the ground “compliant with Uefa regulations and eligible to host tournament football”.
The club will look to acquire six houses in Wooderson Close and relocate residents – while discussions with Sainsbury’s to acquire a piece of land required for the development are ongoing.
A council Planning Committee voted unanimously to approve the application in April 2018.
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But since then there have been minor adjustments to the overall plans plus the Covid pandemic slowed down the process.
The 25,500-seater stadium was opened in 1924 and Palace used to ground-share with Charlton and Wimbledon at different points between 1985 and 2003.
Palace, managed by France World Cup winner Patrick Vieira, have been in the Premier League since 2013.
But it is only 12 years ago they were in administration for a second time until a consortium led by chairman Steve Parish saved the club.
Parish said: “I would like to thank Croydon Council for their continued support for the stadium redevelopment, which will bring substantial investment into the borough, as well as breathing new life into Selhurst Park.
“We would have liked to have started the project sooner, but our plans were delayed by financial constraints caused by the Covid pandemic.
“In the last couple of years our focus has been on bring our exciting Academy development to fruition. But our attention will now turn to the stadium project.
“It has long been our ambition to extend and modernise Selhurst Park, making it a home fit for the 21st century.
“We are looking forward to getting started on the project. There is a lot of preparatory work to be done in the coming months and we will update on a likely timetable in due course.”