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Following the extraordinary meeting of the Club's Board of Directors President Sandro Rosell revealed the unanimous decision to submit the proposal to build a new stadium on top of the current structure to a members' referendum, set for 5 or 6 April.
The President explained:"the option of building a new stadium on a new site has been dismissed as the final cost could well mortgage the Club's future".
The project, which all the Club's members can consult, includes a proposal for a new Palau Blaugrana and the development of an Espai Barça.
Below we reproduce President Rosell's speech
Today, the Board of Directors have unanimously decided to submit the project to build a new Camp Nou on the existing structure of the stadium, to a referendum of all Club members.
The Board has decided not to go forward with the option of building a new stadium in the area proposed to them near the Avenida Diagonal.
This was a difficult decision. Both projects were very attractive, but our commitment was to submit to a referendum projects which were viable from a technical, urban planning and economic standpoint.
Following an in-depth analysis, taking advice from top international experts, the Board has decided that the best option is to stay in Les Corts.
The architectural plan of our current stadium is such that 56 years after its construction, it can serve as the base for our future project.
The Camp Nou is part of our collective memory. It is the largest stadium in Europe and is an icon of the city of Barcelona.
The option of building a new stadium on a new site has been dismissed as the final cost could well mortgage the Club and its members and tie the hands of future Boards.
The project we have chosen is achievable. To continue leading the field, we need to take this historic step, which will need the efforts of all of us, but which will guarantee the comfort of a new stadium with the most up to date technologies for its users and our sports people. We will also multiply the value of our property and our ability to generate new additional earnings without the need to sell or reduce our patrimony.
We believe in this project because it is achievable alongside our constant search for sporting excellence.
This new project also includes the construction of a new Palau Blaugrana, as well as the development of the land called Espai Barça. We will have a new sports hall which will maintain the spirit of our current Palau, whilst adapting to current needs. The new Palau will strengthen our commitment to a wide range of sports.
It is very important to stress that we are able to take on this project because of the reduction in our debt which we have achieved over recent years and which is an objective we will continue to work on. The economic efforts we have made are beginning to bear fruit and we can go into this operation with the maximum guarantees.
I can say, now more than ever, that the best is still to come and I would like to invite all our members to use this project as a unifying element.
This Board of Directors is proposing to our members the construction of a new stadium on top of the current structure of the Camp Nou. It will be other Borads of Directors who will have to preserve this patrimony, as others and other Presidents have preserved the current Camp Nou.
We will be informing members over the next few weeks concerning the project itself and they will be able to see it and ask questions. Finally, when all these questions have been answered they will decide in a clear referendum if this project goes forward to fruition.
The detailed calendar for the referendum process will be released over the next few days and we are planning to hold the vote itself on the weekend of April 5/6, coinciding with the game to be played at the Camp Nou.
It will be the collective opinion of the Club’s members which will allow us to consolidate this project and project this Club as a definitively global entity, firmly established amongst the great football clubs.
Before my fellow Board members Javier Faus and Jordi Moix explain the details of the project we will be presenting to the members, I would like to thank the Board, the Director General and the Club executives and employees for the total dedication and passion they have shown towards this project and also the Barcelona City Council for their collaboration.
I would also like to remember our Presidents Agustí Montal Galobart and Francesc Miró-Sans. It was they and their Boards who projected our future so successfully with the original Camp Nou and all of us have to push this project forward with the same determination, aware that it will not be easy and will require great effort from us all, but that we will improve our inheritance and leave to future generations a jewel which will guarantee that our history and our legend continue to grow".
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