Stunning fan plaza at Everton stadium takes shape

30 Apr 2024

Everton Feb21

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Precision craftsmanship has paved the way for the two halves of the expansive Fan Plaza at Everton Stadium to come together.

So far, work on the 30,000m-sq plaza has been undertaken in two sections, with the busy vehicle access road slicing through the middle.

Now, following the relocation of all deliveries to the north end of the stadium, the specialist Laing O’Rourke stone contractors are fully-focused on combining the two paved sections to inch-perfect precision.

Dave Ruddy, Project Manager for Laing O’Rourke, explained: “A lot of work is going into closing up the two halves of the eastern fan plaza.

“We just recently shut down the main vehicle entrance to allow them to enter via the northern turrets, which enables us to close up the two halves.

“The logistics of the overall scheme are quite difficult. There is a lot of activity on site at the moment and around 1,200 workers on site, along with multiple vehicle deliveries coming onto site every day, so it’s all about trying to maintain that equilibrium between keeping the job fed and keeping everyone safe.”

A further level of complication sees the heritage assets being reinstalled as the plaza grows.

That means many more of the historic railway lines, dating back to the dock’s heyday as a distribution point for goods heading into and out of Liverpool, being integrated into the final design.

Ruddy added: “Firstly, we’re installing the reclaimed railway tracks, which is an important part of the heritage compliance scheme.

“So far we have installed about 1,800 linear metres and it’s like a massive jigsaw involving very difficult and heavy items, so we’re reliant on machinery to place them, but it’s a testament to the skill of the workers as to how straightforward that process has been.

“There’s a high emphasis on the engineering part of that, in terms of setting it all out and ensuring it fits in where it should, and when that is complete you will start to see the paving close in around them, which in term frees up the installation of furniture and the completion of the street lighting columns.”

Skilled craftsmen from Vetter, who are part of the Laing O’Rourke group of companies, have worked diligently through all that the weather could throw at them during the 52-week programme to create the fan plaza.
And Ruddy is full of praise for the workforce in keeping the landscaping scheme firmly on track for completion in late summer.

He said: “It’s a testament to their skill, particularly those working in the external realm.

“There is no protection out there from the elements and they are out in it from 7.30am to 6pm, so you do feel for them sometimes.
“There is a still lot of interface with all that is happening with the stadium façade and barrel cladding to the roof being installed, so we have to get the timing just right, so that we don’t put the paving in too early and run the risk of damaging it through either the cranes, or heavy plant.
“But they thrive on it and just love getting stuck in and getting the work done to the standard required for this job.”


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