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Last Updated: Friday, 7 July 2006, 12:27 GMT 13:27 UK
Cardiff stadium 'ready by 2008'
Cardiff City's proposed new stadium
Cardiff will submit this new design to the local council
Cardiff City have sought to quell fears over the viability of their proposed new stadium by saying construction work will begin by the end of the year.

The 35m project for a 30,000-seater stadium and retail park has been dogged by delays and negative publicity.

But Cardiff deputy chairman Peter Ridsdale says the finances are in place and he expects Cardiff council to approve the business plan in September.

"We can complete this stadium by the summer of 2008," he told BBC Sport.

"There's been too much negative publicity. The sceptics can go away, this is now a reality. We are going to build the stadium.

"We've shown the visuals for the new stadium, we've got the retailer signed up.

"We want to get some positive news out there before the start of the new season so that those people who have been saying it will never happen can now understand it will happen.

It's a very exciting development which will be social benefits to the city of Cardiff

Cardiff City deputy chairman Peter Ridsdale

"I want them to get behind us for the new season and show us their support."

Cardiff were given a further four-month extension by the local council in May to provide more information on how they would finance the project.

They are now ready to submit those details, and the club are entirely confident they will stand up to scrutiny.

A three-month judicial review period would then follow before construction work can begin on ground adjacent to Cardiff's current home at Ninian Park.

"We expect to have bulldozers in by the end of the year," Ridsdale added.

Integral to the stadium scheme is securing a 438,700 sq ft retail development on the 60-acre site.

American discount store group CostCo and Asda have signed contracts to become tenants, and the club say talks are at an advanced stage to secure another three.

Ridsdale said: "The retailers are signed up and the land is being acquired by the retail developer.

"We know what the price is so we know how much money we've got to build the stadium. We've designed the stadium within that budget and we can now see the finishing line.

"It's a very exciting development which will have social benefits to the city of Cardiff."

The club last season faced administration with 30m debts and sold several players to reduce the wage bill.

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