Manchester City are to install 5,620 railed seats at the Etihad Stadium, which is likely to be in preparation for the return of a standing section.
The installation of the railed area will take place over the summer in preparation for the return of fans for the 2021/22 season. The work will take place in the south east and south west corners of the south stand, which have been identified as areas of the ground where ‘persistent standing’ takes place.
The club also state that the installation will be ready should legislation regarding seating areas change in the future. At the moment, all grounds have to be all seater stadium in accordance with the Taylor report following the Hillsborough tragedy, however there have been calls in recent years to allow sections of grounds to have ‘safe standing’ areas.
“The development and installation of a bespoke rail seating system at the Etihad Stadium will not only improve supporter safety but also ensures that until there is a change in legislation which permits safe standing, the matchday experience of supporters and Seasoncard holders in the lower tier of the South Stand will remain unaffected,” said Danny Wilson, Managing Director of Manchester City Operations.
“Whilst we will continue to remind supporters that they should remain seated during matches, we are also pleased to inform them that the installation of a rail seating area means the Etihad Stadium will be ready and prepared should the government bring forward legislation to introduce safe standing in the Premier League.”