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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 March 2008, 22:14 GMT
Demolition go-ahead for stadium
Meadowbank Stadium was built for the 1970 Commonwealth Games

Councillors in Edinburgh have voted to demolish Meadowbank Stadium and replace it with a smaller arena.

The ruling Lib Dem/SNP coalition was supported by the Conservatives, as 39 councillors voted for the proposals.

Under the plans, the 16,000 seater stadium will be replaced with a 5,000 capacity arena, and some of the land will be sold to housing developers.

The Save Meadowbank Campaign said the council's decision went against the wishes of the electorate.

Money from the housing development will be used to help pay for the new 25m stadium, along with grants.

Campaign spokesman Kevin Connor said: "The current facilities are hugely popular and need to be increased to cater for demand - but instead the council has decided to reduce capacity.

"The plans presented today include no provision for outdoor football pitches.

Impression of the stadium which was planned for Sighthill
Plans to build a new stadium in Sighthill were shelved last year

"There is no throwing area, no warm-up area for athletes and no athletics storage facility.

"As for the cyclists, they have been told to get on their bikes."

Liberal Democrat sports spokeswoman Marjorie Thomas, said: "Originally I had hoped we could refurbish the existing buildings but I have been convinced that this would not be value for money and cannot be justified."

Lib Dem councillor, Gary Peacock, voted for a Green Party amendment calling for the site to be retained for sports use.

He said: "I think a sale of this scale is unacceptable."

Plans to build a new arena in Sighthill were shelved last year.

On top of the 25m construction costs, it is thought about 5m would be spent on fitting out and developing the new centre.



SEE ALSO
Mini arena mooted under new plans
11 Mar 08 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
Stadium sale may fund pool revamp
17 Dec 07 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
Games lessons 'must be learned'
09 Nov 07 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
Funding 'inadequate' for sports
17 Aug 07 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
New stadium 'dead in the water'
12 Jun 07 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife
'Mistakes made' over Meadowbank
30 Mar 07 |  Edinburgh, East and Fife

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