MILAN (AP) — AC Milan and Inter Milan formally want to build a new stadium. The 2026 Olympics looks set to lose its intended opening ceremony venue.
The storied Milan soccer clubs jointly asked city officials Wednesday for permission to go ahead with a 60,000-seat stadium replacing the iconic, publicly owned San Siro.
The clubs said they plan to pay for a $1.35 billion project to become a “sports, entertainment, and shopping” hub creating 3,500 jobs.
“This is a comprehensive project that foresees private investments of over 1.2 billion euros,” the clubs said, adding it was “essential in bringing Milan’s football back to the elite of the European and global football arena.”
A new stadium would be a symbol of regeneration after periods of decline since AC Milan won the last of its seven European titles in 2007, and Inter won its third and most recent European title in 2010.
After years of speculation and analysis about the 80,000-capacity San Siro’s future, the clubs decided building a new arena next to the city-owned Guiseppe Meazza stadium is a better option. Playing through, and paying for, a complete stadium renovation offers less certainty.
The technical and economic study submitted Wednesday comes 16 days after Milan was picked as the 2026 Winter Games host in a joint bid with Alpine ski resort Cortina d’Ampezzo.
San Siro was proposed by bid leaders to the International Olympic Committee to stage the opening ceremony.
Still, there are more stages to pass before this feasibility study becomes a detailed stadium plan.
The clubs said their formal request “aims at obtaining the declaration of public interest from the Municipality of Milan.”
A detailed architectural design would follow later that “honors Milan’s reputation for innovation and internationalization.”
“The proposal to the local institutions marks a first official step by the clubs,” they said, “beginning a shared journey together with the Municipality toward constructing a modern, sustainable and accessible urban district in the San Siro area, built around a new world-class stadium.