Work on Cardiff City FC's new 30,000 seater stadium started on Wednesday with contractors being drafted in to clear land for the development.
The stadium is on the site of the old Leckwith athletics arena
The £38m stadium in Leckwith, near the club's current Ninian Park ground, is due to be ready by February 2009.
The work on the stadium project, which includes a retail development on the 60-acre site, is in preparation for major construction work in April.
Leckwith athletics stadium will also be replaced as part of the scheme.
Bosses from the club and its development partners Cardiff-based PMG Estates were joined by Cardiff Council leader Rodney Berman on Wednesday at the construction site.
"We've been battling for years to get to this point and it's fantastic that this work is commencing," said Mr Berman.
Planned timeline of development
Work on a new athletics track starts in April 2007
The retail development will be open for business in Easter 2008
The stadium will be completed by February 2009
"A lot of work has gone on behind the scenes to get to where we are today, but for most people seeing the work on site will be the first evidence that the new stadium is becoming a reality.
"Over the coming months the council will continue to support Cardiff City Football Club and PMG in completing the stadium on schedule, giving the club and its fans the top flight facilities they deserve."
The project has been dogged by delays and for a time the council had been reluctant to give it the go-ahead until assurances over the viability of the plans.
But in November, the council recommended that it go ahead.
Paul Guy, director of PMG said: "Cardiff has been hearing about the plans for a new stadium for Cardiff City Football Club for a long time.
"Now the talking is over and the action begins." Mr Guy said the preparatory work would pave the way for the main contractor Laing O'Rourke to begin work on site in less than two months time.