Meis promises an intimate, intimidating, unique arena

Friday, 8 September, 2017 79comments  |  Jump to most recent
Architect Dan Meis has written a blog entry dedicated to Everton's Bramley-Moore Dock where he reiterates his excitement for what will be a project unlike any other his firm has tackled before.

The US-based studio was selected by the club to design an iconic stadium on the banks of the Mersey and supporters are now anxiously awaiting the first renderings of his vision.

Meis offers no timescale for the unveiling of those visuals but he assures Evertonians that he and his team "are being careful to insure that we are sure that whatever we show, we can deliver.

He explains that he wants to design an arena that "feels like it 'grew from the Docks' and can simultaneously look like it is from the future and yet has always been there."

Meis signs off by pledging to update the page further soon but leaves fans with a final thought:

"Someone recently tweeted to me that modern English stadiums are no longer intimate or intimidating...that they can't be because of modern regulations etc. To that person I say... "just wait, and see".


Reader Comments (79)

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Jamie Evans
1 Posted 08/09/2017 at 17:29:57
Dan Meis – we believe in you. Don't let us down.
Liam Reilly
2 Posted 08/09/2017 at 17:36:04
Good response to the City losing out on the Common Wealth Games.

I said this before but one positive by being at the back of the queue when building a new stadium is that you get a good view of all the mistakes gone before.

Now just don't repeat them.

Andy Meighan
3 Posted 08/09/2017 at 17:41:27
Right little tease, isn't he.
Brian Williams
4 Posted 08/09/2017 at 17:48:49
He explains that he wants to design an arena that "feels like it 'grew from the Docks' and can simultaneously look like it is from the future and yet has always been there."

Sent shivers down my spine when I read that!

Derek Knox
5 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:22:37
Thought we might have seen one of those artist's/architect's projected preview of what we can expect.

Or, have I missed something here?

Will Mabon
6 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:24:29
How many teases is this now? Without mention of the track this time. See what's being done?

Let's see a basic layout sketch showing how we get the intimidating design with the stand proximity of Goodison mentioned early on, if having to accommodate the temporary track. It's five minutes to a guy like you, Dan.

The myriad design and engineering details take time, we can wait for those.

Will Mabon
7 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:25:28
Derek, no – you caught it.
Jay Woods
8 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:26:48
Kaiserslautern in Germany had what was, for many years, an absurdly intimidating stadium that struck terror into almost every visiting side. And then they modernised it for the World Cup, killing the atmosphere entirely, and with it, the dread of playing there.

The team – always considered a puncher-above-its-own-weight – were relegated not long after and have spent most of the time since in the second tier.

Richard Reeves
9 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:28:25
I wonder if the "feels like it 'grew from the docks'" line means it will have a brick outer build to it.

Architects know all the right things to say to sell their product, hence the canopy and traditional supporter with coat and hat reference,most of us would prefer a closing roof.

Whatever it look's like the most important thing is where it is and I didn't thing we had any chance of the docks until Moshiri arrived.
Will Mabon
10 Posted 08/09/2017 at 18:29:36
Jay, I remember that stadium as you describe it.

"...and have spent most of the time since in the second tier."

...of the stadium?

Jay Woods
11 Posted 08/09/2017 at 19:53:48
Will Mabon, have the Friday Night Trophy for most contrived witticism of the week!
Steve Ferns
12 Posted 08/09/2017 at 19:54:56
Will, Jay means in Bundesliga 2.
Alan Smith
13 Posted 08/09/2017 at 22:28:27
It surely has to have a single tier "blue wall" preferably safe standing, which backs onto the Mersey and has a bigger capacity than the yellow wall.
Damian Wilde
14 Posted 08/09/2017 at 22:29:01
Steve, I think he knows 🙈
Nigel Munford
15 Posted 09/09/2017 at 00:36:24
Richard, why would you need a retractable roof when you can have heated seats. I'm sure Dan can include some of these, but not a retractable roof, indoor footy is for five a side games.
Frank Eardley
16 Posted 09/09/2017 at 01:35:16
If the fans are as quiet as we have been for the last few years at Goodison it doesn't matter how good the design is. It won't be intimidating
Paul Columb
17 Posted 09/09/2017 at 05:02:53
I've been closely watching the stadium developments (like King's Dock, Kirkby and Walton Hall before) with great interest as, tbh I've got a bit of a stadium 'thing' and also consider a move from Goodison (if it has to happen) as pivotal in our history and future.

Firstly...delighted it's waterfront. Aside from KD, the others were a relief to see see come and go, neither having any legs from the get-go thankfully.

Really liking all the nosies so far from the Meis camp but getting a little concerned that Dan doesn't know what he's setting himself up for. He's gotten to know the fanbase somewhat, but is essentially from another planet than Merseyside and did not live through the past 30 years as a blue .or one for whom the weekend 's result dictated the mood for the week to come (as monofocused as that might sound).
He's placed himself on something of a pedestal with his tweeting and pub/event cameos and with his degree of engagement/commentary has set his firm a very high bar without perhaps entirely considering the wide scope of personal tastes and expectations, notwithstanding the possible financial constraints and whims of the steel and constructions markets.

But wtf do I know? I suppose I just wish that he'd hole up for a while, ignore the twitter interrogation, avoid excess commentary and self inflicted bar-setting .and produce the most deliverable, atmospheric, 60k capacity cathedral of football every witnessed. Best of luck Dan Meis an Co. Glad you're on the job.

Sam Hoare
18 Posted 09/09/2017 at 07:29:59
I hope that the stadium hype delivers more than the player investment hype. My faith in this new regime has been damaged by the well publicised failings in this transfer window and whereas a few months ago I was optimistic on all fronts I now am much less so.

If the stadium comes close to delivering what is being promised then it will be a tremendous step forward and a true Everton legacy from the likes of Moshiri and Kenwright.

Colin Glassar
19 Posted 09/09/2017 at 07:42:27
I don't want to be the party pooper but, I'm more interested in hearing from our majority shareholder is the money in place to start building?

This architect/salesman can say what he wants e.g. Iconic stadium, history making, best design ever, Disney on the Mersey etc to get us all drooling and fantasising but if the finances aren't there we are going to build jack shit.

John G Davies
21 Posted 09/09/2017 at 07:49:20

Understandable fears with the history of Kenwright and Co re stadiums.

Dont worry about this one though mate. Totally different breed of men involved in achieving the new stadium.
In 3-4 years we will be sitting in a state of the art stadium in the banks of the Royal Blue Mersey.

Derek Knox
22 Posted 09/09/2017 at 07:53:05
There's an idea Colin, if it all fizzles away, we could call it " The Jack Shit Stadium" :-)
Will Mabon
23 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:04:21
Well Colin, after recent events a "Feel-good" was predictable, and sure enough. It was just a question of which.

Maybe the money angle will be wheeled out after the next crisis... but I'm guessing there will be some sort of announcement soon, things being clearer I hope, since Brum got the decision over Liverpool for the Games bid (which I only found out last night).

Dean Johnson
24 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:07:50
So no more news on the stadium then? Move along please.

Will has it right, stop teasing us like school kids, adults support Everton too

Mike Green
25 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:20:19
Colin #19 - TDD gave me a bit of a wobble on that front. Are we being duped I thought for more than a moment. But no, this week I've got back to reality. I don't think we would've got as far as we have with it without it being real. We're going to have some major hurdles but I don't think money is going to be one of them. Moshiri can sort that over a decent meal with Usmanov if he wants. My larger concern is factors making it unfeasible that are beyond our control.

Meis is saying all the right things but there are plenty of people out there who can't even do that (cue Belgian footballers). He might just be mirroring what he's heard from Kenwright, Elstone, Moshiri, fans and countless other like minded sports enthusiasts over the years but it shows he's listening. It might be that what he reveals in, say, the New Year, is a right dogs dinner but we'll have to wait and see.

I also think there's no co-incidence that this release comes after the CWG news. If Liverpool was in the box seat he might not have been able to be as clear on what we were looking to do - now we know that this project is 100% about us he can push the button and start painting a picture that talks about big home ends, steep stands, intimidating atmosphere as there will be no need to consider how this will all fit in with temporary running tracks etc. For me this was a message to say, hold on, things are coming, we know what you want we just need a bit of time to firm things up now we know where we're heading. If he can deliver something which is spot on I'm prepared to wait a very long time for it. I'm praying they don't cock it up after getting this far.

Will Mabon
26 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:38:26
"I also think there's no co-incidence that this release comes after the CWG news."

I'm not sure when Meis presented or prepared his statement, but if it was after the Games decision (likely), it was possible to put the track idea to bed, particularly as he talks in the vein of design.

I won't make any assumptions 'til all aspects have been told to us clearly, about eight times at least. I hope there are no multi-use surprises in store, in a partnership with the L.A. despite the Games being out of the equation.

I'd like to hear news that we're going it alone as Everton with the new stadium, as soon as the board have the finance structured, if that's the way it's to be.

As someone posted in a rant on TW recently - let's get fuckin' digging!

Mike Berry
27 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:41:42
In a few years time we will all be sitting in the most iconic stadium in the world ( if we can get a seat) !
Don will...deliver !
Tony Graham
28 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:49:51
The Dallas Cowboys AT&T stadium PLEASE
Nicholas Ryan
29 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:51:09
If the stadium has a metal frame, will that make him Steely Dan ?!
John G Davies
30 Posted 09/09/2017 at 08:57:38
But that joke makes you Nicholas Parsons 😁

Only kidding Nick

Kevin O'Regan
31 Posted 09/09/2017 at 09:42:49
Frank. I think you have a point there unfortunately. It is related to culture and the mentality of the fans and I do think that needs to be worked on. Obviously success brings its own noise but a decent atmosphere shouldn't be reliant on Stadium or or success alone.. we need to foster a matchday experience which is both intense and good fun.. ie not agressive but intense and a great day or night out.. lots to be done in that regard.
Phil Walling
32 Posted 09/09/2017 at 09:57:55
Starry -eyed bullshit, all of it ! I'm just waiting to hear how it's going to be paid for and when !
Peter Mills
33 Posted 09/09/2017 at 10:43:06
Nicholas #29, given the provenance of the Steely Dan name we can only hope not!
Karl Parsons
34 Posted 09/09/2017 at 11:28:55
I tell you what: If it was left to Toffeeewebers to discover America, fly to the Moon or invent the internet we would all be sat on our hands and writing post it notes to each other.

FFS, when someone is flying our flag and sets it very high let's rally around them; like true Evertonians do!

Of course I've been totally frustrated by our Club's previous misdemeanours, I know we've fucked up in the past, but if you cannot see the macro view here you really do need to wake up.

The Club are taking giant strides into the future. That takes guts, determination, a strategic mind and money, in the knowledge that not everything will change overnight.

I say shoot for the stars Dan. Because if it comes off everyone here can waller in living his dream and Moshiri's vision for our Club.

Phil Walling
36 Posted 09/09/2017 at 13:00:13
Moshiri's Dream ? What . bringing Naise back into the fold ? He'll have to do better than that for me !
Dennis Stevens
37 Posted 09/09/2017 at 13:05:24
All good as far as it goes. However, there's a long, long road ahead. It sounds like Dan is approaching the job in the right way. I do hope that this massive home end is designed to include the option of safe-standing - we know it's coming, thankfully, & so it's imperative that the plans incorporate that option.
Ian Hollingworth
39 Posted 09/09/2017 at 17:04:42
Pity we don't have a team fit to play in such a stadium
Lenny Kingman
40 Posted 09/09/2017 at 20:01:11
Until the cornerstone is laid this is just talk. And talk is cheap. Unlike what is required to change the face of a club and, indeed, a city.

After the last couple of weeks of Rooneygate, surrendering matches, bummed by Brum and a myriad of other reasons familiar to ToffeeWebbers everywhere, the future looks less Rosie.

In fact the promised stadium may be about to set a precedent in the history of architecture. The first building to collapse before it is built. Oh hang on .

Nicholas Ryan
41 Posted 10/09/2017 at 18:13:59
I don't want to sound unduly pessimistic; but do we still get the new ground if we're in the Championship?!
David McMullen
42 Posted 12/09/2017 at 14:03:17
Stadium only, forgetting the horrors on the pitch, it sounds like it will have a brick exterior and I wonder if it will be built below ground level as that surely has to be tapped in to (grew from the docks).

He's also teasing more with the capacity (60,000). Prefer 65,000 like.

Simon Smith
43 Posted 13/09/2017 at 01:13:19
Just a thought but has there been any mention of a double players tunnel? One for the home team and one for the away team?As I'm sure I've seen somewhere that FIFA or UEFA asked for this now so the ground can be considered for certain finals games?
Mark Melton
44 Posted 13/09/2017 at 07:52:07
Derek, #22, how about "Baddison"?
Colin Glassar
45 Posted 13/09/2017 at 08:55:58
David 42, are you mad? Who wants an underground stadium?
Phil Walling
46 Posted 13/09/2017 at 09:40:49
Humour, Colin, humour!
Steven Jones
47 Posted 13/09/2017 at 10:58:26
Quite some time ago – I have sent a couple of pages of ideas to Dan and his team and have got a positive friendly response. Largely connected with the history of EFC and Merseyside and elements of making it a real place from the off. Some of those ideas are reflected in the makeover of Goodison – which is better than any other ground I have seen.

I believe he will go with a brick and then modern glass – but hey ho, it could be all metal and I will applaud and get behind it as our new home!

Steven Jones
48 Posted 13/09/2017 at 11:02:32
One point on the timing and waiting –- the fact that We have lost the Commonwealth Games will mean that at least the work being done on the track options will be ripped up and they will now be re-packaging and re-looking at the plans from a financial but also a refocus of the design and build elements taking into account feasibility issues.

Even if this is little impact overall, they will still be doing some work on this aspect right now as the announcement was very recent.

Steven Jones
49 Posted 13/09/2017 at 11:11:47
For me: Indianapolis Lucas Oil Stadium please, Dan:

Paul Kelly
50 Posted 13/09/2017 at 11:31:45
Sorry Steven but that Lucas Oil Stadium reminds me of Battersea Power Station, outside anyway, inside don't look to bad though.
Steven Jones
51 Posted 13/09/2017 at 11:55:55
Yes, Paul, I see the Battersea similarity – I was more liking the brick finish to reflect the docks, the open glass end, retractable roof to keep the Mersey estuary winds, cold and rain at bay and the steep stands and it looks very un-bowl like. I could see a church element and Rupert's Tower aspects in the corners.

I promise I haven't had a sneak peek!

Paul Turner
52 Posted 13/09/2017 at 12:06:15
Robert Elstone's quote: "a cauldron of energy". If only – and that applies to certain players and supporters alike. To paraphrase from "Field of Dreams"... 'build it, and they will come'.
Paul Kelly
53 Posted 13/09/2017 at 12:12:03
I'm warming to your vision mate.

You got me thinking about brick colours and the surrounding architecture.

Jesus, who knew visualising a project would give me such food for thought! Got a headache now mate, off for a lie down.

Paul Kossoff
54 Posted 13/09/2017 at 15:21:03
Just make it bigger and better than the Red Shite's pigsty; that will do. Oh and have it so if the other lot expand capacity, we can.
Chris Jones [Burton]
55 Posted 13/09/2017 at 15:29:53
In reply to Steve Jones (no relation, but I do have a brother of the same name) the thing about the end on this LucasOil stadium is that it suggests a door/gate, and of course the Mersey, Liverpool and its docks are a gateway to the north of England.
Mike Green
56 Posted 13/09/2017 at 16:02:03
First time I had a look at the Lucas Oil Stadium, it wasn't what I was expecting and wasn't sure what to think. Didn't like it much until I saw the inside and rapidly began to warm to it.

Love the brick facades (though would be expensive...?) and would also be more than happy to move away from the silverdome bowls that now look a bit two-a-penny. Something solid, square and imposing would suit me just fine.

Laurie Hartley
57 Posted 13/09/2017 at 17:04:11
Colin 45 - perhaps not as mad as it sounds.

Sink the pitch and build an underground car park to support the playing surface. Whatever the depth of the pitch below the quay level may return a saving on any of the structure above quay level.

Why am I doing this? To take my mind off last Saturday at Goodison.

Philip Bunting
59 Posted 13/09/2017 at 17:53:10
This is just an idea floating about in my head which the more I think about it the more I get convinced. Why get rid of the dock at all, or certainly keep part of it.

Why not build the pitch over the dock and leave a gateway underneath much like a carpark only for water taxis or small speedboats to dock and let off passengers. World first, inspiring, keeping the docks heritage alive and creating something that only enhances the experience of match day... or am I going mad?

David McMullen
60 Posted 13/09/2017 at 18:19:45
Colin (45) with respect, who the fuck said anything about an underground stadium?

It's a dock, setting it a few meters below ground level will be a fantastic use of it rather than infilling totally. The Lucas Oil Stadium for example is below ground level.

Steve Hogan
61 Posted 13/09/2017 at 18:24:57
Phil (59), You're definitely going mad mate. What you have described is the set of a Bond movie starring Roger Moore.

'Water taxis'f fs... Can you take us to Lime St, mate...

Martin Berry
62 Posted 13/09/2017 at 18:40:02
Like most Blues, I wait with anticipation of what the new stadium will look like. But the one thing that worries me is the £300 million that was muted some time ago. What kind of stadium will we get for that considering Spurs stadium is costing £800 million?
Colin Glassar
63 Posted 13/09/2017 at 19:07:26
When it comes to Everton and stadiums, Phil, I'm sadly lacking in humour.

Can you please elaborate a bit further then, David? I can't picture (in me head) a stadium "a few metres below ground level". I'm sorry, I just might be too thick.

Will Mabon
64 Posted 13/09/2017 at 19:22:05
Colin, it really would be just a few metres, the height of a building storey or two. Entering the lower tiers would be as now, doors in from street level, but off the corridor within/along the stand, turn off and walk down stairs into the lower tier. Pitch say, 10-20 feet below street level. Everything else above ground as now.
Gordon Crawford
65 Posted 13/09/2017 at 19:30:41
Martin, it will end up costing a lot more than that. But also you can't compare London to Liverpool in land prices, London is astronomical.
Colin Glassar
66 Posted 13/09/2017 at 19:32:18
Cheers Will. Call me old fashioned but it sounds a bit strange tbh.
David McMullen
67 Posted 13/09/2017 at 20:25:50
Colin if you can get this link up the chap leading the group at the Lucas Oil Stadium tells you about the stadium being built below ground level (by a considerable amount).


David McMullen
68 Posted 13/09/2017 at 20:38:01
Totally agree about the stadium costs £300m is way too low in comparison to the likes of the Emirates and Tottenham. Even the Lucas Oil Stadium $720m in 2008.

Dan Meis refers and his blog:

"Innovation doesn't always mean that a building has the latest bells and whistles" and refers to an author quote "A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away".

This worries me a little together with the cost that the stadium would be basic (like The Riverside). But is totally at odds with all the statements and promises about how great it will be. Wait and see.

Mike Green
69 Posted 13/09/2017 at 20:43:15
I'm pretty sure the Nou Camp pitch is quite a way below ground level, which is why from the outside it looks far smaller than when you get in.
Colin Glassar
70 Posted 13/09/2017 at 20:46:37
Thanks for the link, David; looks impressive.
Mike Green
71 Posted 13/09/2017 at 20:53:42
Me too, David – thanks. Imagine us having something like that, what a stadium.
Soren Moyer
72 Posted 13/09/2017 at 22:32:08
Jay, Kaiserslautern have always been a yo-yo club.
Laurie Hartley
73 Posted 14/09/2017 at 07:15:14
Thanks for a great link David – what a stadium that is.
Dermot Byrne
74 Posted 14/09/2017 at 08:14:12
Love the outside too


Harry Wallace
75 Posted 14/09/2017 at 08:14:19
Martyn, Spurs stadium will be more expensive no doubt but remember:

1) London land is considerably more expensive than what we paid for the Bramley-Moore lease;

2) That £800m also includes a hotel, brewery, bakery etc so the stadium is only a small part;

3) They have signed a deal with an NFL team so revenue from that gives them more £££.

So if it were just a stadium on Bramley-Moore Dock, you could say it would be much lower.

Colin Glassar
76 Posted 19/09/2017 at 21:21:57
Some good news coming out about this tonight. Coincidence?
Derek Turnbull
77 Posted 21/09/2017 at 11:33:45
American stadiums have a different type of atmosphere to us. They have lots of intermittent roars with the odd chant.

We start songs off over here, those songs need to be loud to spread around the stadium.

The likes of a stadium with lots of small acoustical pens, or multiple tiers is fine in America, but over here you need a place where the songs can start and spread until they reach a crescendo where other sin other stands will hear and instantly join in with.

Talk of a massive home end (though why just one?) is encouraging, but it depends on how it is done. If it is made up of lots of small acoustical pens then it will not work. If it is just one large tier then yes it will. Though why just restrict ourselves to one tier behind the goal?

Don Alexander
78 Posted 21/09/2017 at 12:33:21
The Lucas certainly looks impressive and rightly echoes the history of an industrial city. I hope a similar stadium is in mind for us but the talk of "state-of-the-art" will be redundant in a decade or two because other structures will develop ever more quickly.

What we mustn't forego is the need to somehow create and retain an intimate, huge and intimidating, to the opposition, atmosphere.

Brian Harrison
79 Posted 21/09/2017 at 12:46:39
I am surprised that there has been no mention today of the two goal end stands being named the Howard Kendall and Philip Carter stands. Now I can agree with Kendall having a stand named after him but Philip Carter?
John G Davies
80 Posted 21/09/2017 at 13:00:02
Sacrilege to name a stand after a Tory grandee, especially one built on the land where dockers fought against the pen system applied to them for years. Then fought against Tory government plans to close the docks down.
Don Alexander
81 Posted 21/09/2017 at 19:39:48
Brian Harrison, I'm glad I'm not the only one wondering about Sir Phil's status within our club.

As I understand it, he was only Sir John's accountant and then "led" our club for years until being one of only five chairmen personally devising the modus operandi for the putative Premier League, us thereafter being the only one to completely miss the gravy train in comparison to the four other creators.

He was reportedly also one of the few Thatcher relied on for advice or solace in football matters and he supported the prospective ground move to Kirkby.

Legend? Hmmm.

Brent Stephens
82 Posted 21/09/2017 at 19:52:42
John (#81) aye to that.

The scouser Ricky Tomlinson was also jailed as one of the Shrewsbury 24 (Barry and Saville Kushner – a good read). The Tory govt have decided that crucial government documents relating to the Shrewsbury building workers pickets' trials in 1973 are to be kept locked away for a further 10-50 years. It's already over 40 years of secrecy on this.

Will Mabon
83 Posted 23/09/2017 at 07:45:23
Locking things away = guilty of wrongdoing.

"National security". Sure.

Many people work within a latter day version of a pen system now. It's called things like being competitive and flexible working. The pay is minimum wage, so in real value terms compared with previous decades, you get half a day's "Earnings" but now you work all day for it. The pen is invisible to most.

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