Page last updated at 08:58 GMT, Thursday, 28 August 2008 09:58 UK

'Shared space' city football plan

Crusaders are planning to sell Seaview and share a stadium with Newington

Two north Belfast football clubs have joined forces to launch plans for a new community stadium and sports village.

Premier league team Crusaders and junior side Newington say it is a chance to develop a "shared space" in a divided part of the city.

The proposed development includes a 4,000 capacity stadium, hotel, restaurant and conference facilities.

Crusaders plans to sell its ground on the Shore Road and move to either the Valley or Grove playing fields.

Club manager Stephen Baxter said: "Our vision is founded on two fundamentals. First, all the ingredients for a sound sports and leisure business.

"Second, good community relations - providing opportunities for all the community to join in as players, participants and spectators."

Newington manager Eamon McCarthy said both clubs have deep roots in communities across north Belfast and Newtownabbey.

"We will use this strength to manage one of the few potential shared spaces in the urban area. The project will have ample space for other clubs and sports - including GAA and rugby," he said.


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