It’s taken two tries and about five years, but Chelsea’s quest to expand the stadium site by acquiring part of the land from the neighboring Sir Oswald Stoll Mansions has cleared its final hurdle, with the Stoll Foundation approving the sale today. Chelsea’s bid was chosen back in July, and has now made it through a nine-week consultation period, satisfying a couple objections along the way.
“Today we have announced that we have agreed to sell the majority of our Fulham site to the Chelsea FC ownership group following a 9-week resident consultation. This will enable us to establish new properties, better services for veterans & secure Stoll’s financial sustainability.”
-Stoll statement; source: Twitter
According to reports, Chelsea won’t actually take possession of the land until 2025, allowing a smooth transition for any current residents of the Mansions affected by this transaction. Stoll have been looking to sell (part of) their lot and use the incoming funds to renovate the current site (keeping the historic façade but updating the remaining housing units themselves), while building additional housing elsewhere for their veterans as well. Chelsea are paying about £80m for the back 1.2 acres of the 2-acre site.
“The Chelsea FC ownership group’s offer enables us to limit uncertainty for residents and offer support over a longer period of time.”
-Will Campbell-Wroe, Stoll CEO; source: Twitter
It’s unclear what specific purpose, if any, Chelsea may have in mind for this bit of land at the moment. At the very least, it could improve direct access to Fulham-Broadway tube station, and perhaps also create additional options for a potential stadium redesign and rebuild (such as rotating the orientation of the pitch for a new build).
Hopefully we’ll start hearing a few more concrete ideas about the future of the stadium soon from the ownership after the recent appointment of former SoFi Stadium managing director Jason Gannon as Chief Operating Officer.