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Oldham £80m stadium gets green light

An £80 million plan to build a new stadium for Oldham Athletic and kick-start the regeneration of the Boundary Park area of the town was given the go-ahead last night.

The town's planning committee has granted permission for the scheme, which is one of the biggest regeneration and job creation projects in Oldham's history.

The ambitious masterplan has been created by the Frank Whittle Partnership and its heart will be 550 new homes and apartments to be built around Boundary Park, the home of the League One side.

Sale of the land will help fund a new 16,000 all-seater sports stadium for the club and provide hotel, conference and banqueting facilities.

FWP's plans also include 6,000 sq m of office space, a health and fitness club on the site and discussions are in place to provide space for health facilities for local healthcare practitioners.

As many as 1,000 new jobs are expected to be created during the five-year project. Work on site could now begin by early 2008.

Development work will be phased, starting with the construction of a new North Stand, then replacing the current Chadderton Road and old Main Stand. Only the Rochdale Road End, built in 1992, would remain intact.

The project has been drawn up with the full backing of Oldham Athletic's owners, Simon Corney, Simon Blitz and Daniel Gazal, who bought the club in December 2003.

Neil Ainsworth, FWP's design director, said: "Our plans capitalise on the redundant land surrounding the ground to create a balanced mix of social and economic regeneration, valuable health services and much-needed, income-generating business and corporate facilities."