Albion have completed the purchase of the site at Lancing where the club’s new training facility will be built, meaning construction can now begin in earnest.
Executive director Martin Perry and CEO Paul Barber met with representatives from Adur District Council and New Monks Farm at the Amex this morning to sign all the necessary paperwork to give the club possession of the site.
Building works are now expected to begin in the next few weeks, with the aim to have the facility fully functional for the start of pre-season in 2014.
Perry said, “This is a really significant day for the football club. It means that we can now get onto site and start building our training ground.
“This is the final piece of the jigsaw as far as the club’s infrastructure is concerned. The new training ground will help us to develop the club, develop the players and to support Gus [Poyet] in everything that he’s trying to achieve.”
Neil Parkin, leader of Adur District Council, said, “This is largest inward investment in Lancing’s history, and very important for the people of Lancing and Adur. The immediate cash value of this deal to the community is £1.75m, with £400k going to Adur District Council and the rest as part of the Section 106 contributions, to enhance public open spaces and leisure facilities.”
Meanwhile, the club has also announced the preferred contractors for the building works.
Following an exhaustive and competitive tender process, the contract will be let in two parts.
The main training ground, featuring 11 pitches - including a covered half-size pitch - the training academy and the first team facilities will be constructed by Buckingham Group Contracting under a building contract valued at £22 million.
The contractor selected to construct the access road linking with the existing Mash Barn Lane will be Adenstar Developments under a £600,000 civil engineering contract.
Both contractors were employed on the American Express Community Stadium.
Buckingham constructed the stadium, external concourses, coach and bus interchange and the associated highway and railway works. The £73 million contract was completed to a very high quality, on time and within its original budget. They are currently completing the expansion of the stadium, increasing the capacity to 30,750 seats.
Adur-based Adenstar Developments Ltd constructed Bennetts Field, Copse and the Bridge car parks and the access roads through the University of Sussex and Brighton Aldridge Academy adjacent to the stadium. All of these works were successfully completed on time and within their original budgets.
Perry added, “We are delighted to be working with Buckingham and Adenstar once again.
“The works have been procured by a stringent tender process, and it is great to see that both of these companies are able to prove that they are competitive on price and yet we know they will deliver a building to the very highest standards of both quality and customer service.
“This is another very important project for us and we are confident we have the right partners to help us deliver a facility that will enable the club to achieve its ambitions.”