Planning permission has been granted for a new stand at the north end of Maidstone United`s Gallagher Stadium.
With the approval of Maidstone Borough Council, construction work on the 1,768-capacity standing terrace will begin in November, with completion scheduled for the end of March 2017.
The project, which is costing in the region of £600,000 to £750,000, will increase the stadium’s capacity to 4,200 – more than meeting the requirement for the National League.
Club chief executive Bill Williams said: “This is fantastic news for the club.
“The quality of the application prepared by project manager Steve Harrison has enabled Maidstone Borough Council to determine it in good time and we thank the members and officers for that.
“We’ve now got a busy month ahead to make sure everything is in place for the contractor to come in and start work in November. These are exciting times for the club and we’re about to see another significant change to a venue that wasn’t even here five years ago. It just shows where we’ve come in such a short space of time.”
Similar in height to the Conway main stand, the covered terracing will be made up of eleven double standing rows and there are also four wheelchair viewing spaces provided.
It has been designed to have separate home and away sections, when needed and could also be converted to all-seated at a later date, should that be required. A concourse running underneath the stand will provide additional refreshments kiosks and toilets.
This is the second major development project in the last 18 months for the club – both of which have come on the back of promotion to a higher league.
Williams added: “People have remarked on the ‘million pound’ penalty save in that promotion final. Adding the costs of the new pitch and stand together, that’s the kind of money the directors have committed to invest.
“Through `Stand up for the Stones`, the supporter-led fundraiser, £21,000 has already been donated towards our target of £50,000 by year-end. We are very grateful to the individuals and organisations who’ve contributed – it’s good to know there’s that backing among fans and the local community”.