- Title: World's 'greenest' soccer club wins approval for eco-friendly wooden stadium
- Date: 30th December 2019
- Summary: GLOUCESTERSHIRE, ENGLAND, UK (FILE - JULY 31, 2015) (REUTERS) VIEW OF PITCH AND STANDS AWAY STAND SIGN ABOVE AWAY STAND READING (English): "CHANGING THE RULES OF THE GAME"
- Embargoed: 13th January 2020 12:25
- Keywords: Dale Vince Forest Green Rovers Zaha Hadid Architects vegan soccer club wooden stadium
- Location: GLOUCESTERSHIRE, ENGLAND, UK
- City: GLOUCESTERSHIRE, ENGLAND, UK
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Environment,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA002BC63ZGF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Forest Green Rovers, arguably the most talked about English lower-league soccer club due to their green ethos, received an early Christmas present after their plans for a 5,000-seat wooden stadium were finally approved.
The outline bid for the stadium designed by Zaha Hadid Architects was accepted by the Stroud District Council in Gloucestershire on Thursday December 19.
Among the planned innovations, Forest Green Rovers' new stadium will feature a translucent roof to reduce shadows on the pitch; improving the game itself but also aiding the grass growth. The shape and position of the tunnels around pitch are designed to allow the wind to pass through, which again aids the grass growth and cools the pitch during summer without the need for the big fans which you might find at Premiership clubs.
Earlier in June, the club's initial bid for the stadium was rejected after the council cited concerns over noise, traffic and the impact on the local community.
The stadium plans are part of a 100 million pounds ($129.97 million) Eco Park project in Gloucestershire led by Forest Green chairman Dale Vince.
Vince, founder of British green energy suppliers Ecotricity, got involved with the club in 2010 when it was facing a less-than-rosy future, with financial problems and an outdated ground. In the last few years, Vince has instigated what they call the 'Green Revolution' at the club with an organic pitch, solar power, robotic lawnmower, and an all-vegan menu among their green initiatives.
He told Reuters in 2017, "the really big deal is the fact that it's all made out of wood; minimum use of concrete. If you look at the carbon impact of sports stadia through their working life, 75 percent of that impact comes from the materials that they're made with, so it's not the running cost. Wood is of course a very sustainable material, low in carbon."
Forest Green Rovers, founded in 1889, are currently based at The New Lawn in Nailsworth, Gloucestershire, south-west England. The proposed new site is just over 5 miles (8 km) away.
(Production: Tanya Lezaic)
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