Hearts unveil new plans for Gorgie

The view of Hearts' main stand in McLeod Street. Picture: Neil Hanna
The view of Hearts' main stand in McLeod Street. Picture: Neil Hanna
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HEARTS have unveiled new details of their plans to build a new stand.

The redevelopment of the stadium will see McLeod Street given a facelift, with plans for new lighting, plants, sculptures and even a huge three-dimensional mural on the gable end of a tenement block.

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An early-stage planning application has now been submitted to the city council, with work on site expected to begin by the autumn.

The main stand will have seating for 7000 fans – bringing the stadium’s total capacity up to more than 20,000, and could open early in the 2017/18 season.

It will include a home for a new Tynecastle Nursery, alongside space for a club shop, ticket office and admin office.

The plans also boast of an improved “spectator experience”, with “unobstructed views” of the pitch, modern seating, food kiosks and lounges.

Improved access for the disabled is also highlighted, as well as better internal facilities for players and officials.

A Hearts spokesman said the proposals will now be put through an eight-week public consultation process – with more details and artists’ impressions set to be released soon.

Last week, a statement from club owner Ann Budge said the new stand would “blend in” with Tynecastle High School and give a fresh look to McLeod Street.

She also revealed a 3G football pitch could be laid behind the Wheatfield Stand and made available for community use.

It is understood talks are still ongoing between Hearts and the council as the club seeks to snap up the extra land needed to fulfil its ambitions.

Ms Budge’s statement said the project “involves far more than just building a new stand”.

She added: “It is about revitalising the entire stadium and indeed regenerating the wider Gorgie/Dalry area.

“The centre piece will be a visually-dramatic new main stand that will replace our 101-year-old Archibald Leitch-designed stand and help create a totally new look to McLeod Street, which will blend in with the new Tynecastle High.

“Our wide-ranging plans also include developing the under-croft in the Wheatfield Stand and, in conjunction with NB Distillers, evaluating the construction of a new 3G pitch for community use behind the Wheatfield Stand.

“By working closely with the council, we will completely change the face of the Tynecastle area, bringing benefits both to Hearts, the council and the wider community.”