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Is Dan Meis set for a return to the New Stadium team?

Tuesday, 19 October 2021 33comments  |  Jump to last

Dan Meis the American architect of Everton's new stadium, says he'll soon be 're-engaged' on the Bramley-Moore Dock project.

Meis was clearly unhappy about parting ways once it was perceived that his job was done and the project could be presented for planning permission. At this stage the Engineers often take over to finalize and implement the design concept the architect has put in place.

On being taken off the project and his prospective return, Meis said: “It was one of the biggest disappointments in my career because it was a bit shocking.

“I felt like we had devoted so much of our attention and passion to this club and this project. There were a lot of hurdles we had to go through to prove it could be done there, to convince Liverpool that it should be done there.

“When they went to fans to do their surveys about support, it was unbelievable.Even non-Evertonians were supportive of the project and largely that was due to the work we had done and worked so hard.

“I had lost another project along the way because I was so devoted to Everton. I had another client who basically said ‘I don't think you have the bandwidth to do both projects' so we were taken off a project because of our devotion to Everton, then all of a sudden I was off Everton.

“I think what was disappointing to me was I had a team of 30 people who had been thinking about this building 24/7 for years, and I don't believe there was anybody better positioned to help carry that through.

“The good thing is, what can happen in that process is the delivery architect comes in, works with the contractor and all of a sudden the design gets beat up, watered down and changed for various reasons – that hasn't happened here.

“It's been great to see that both the club and everyone involved has been pretty protective of the original vision, so I feel really good about that.

“Most excitingly, I've been talking to the club about being re-engaged and so that's going to happen really soon and it feels great to be back in the family and feel part of it.

“It really did feel like one of my children yanked away from me, it was that excruciating but it has a happy ending.”

Reader Comments (33)

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Brent Stephens
1 Posted 19/10/2021 at 18:16:07
Does Dan Meis's return suggest some problems have emerged in the planned development of BMD?
Tony Abrahams
2 Posted 19/10/2021 at 18:23:53
I hope not, Brent, but I’m glad that the American, Dan Meis, is back on board, because he seems to have put a lot of time and effort into the stadium project, and also comes across like he has a real affinity for Evertonians, when he speaks about Bramley-Moore Dock, or maybe I’m just going soft in my old age?
Brent Stephens
3 Posted 19/10/2021 at 18:28:14

I'm also going soft in my old age. Meis sounds like a great guy and a good blue. It's the John Le Carre in me – seeing conspiracies that probably aren't there. Or are they?!

Brian Hennessy
4 Posted 19/10/2021 at 19:32:51
Meis is back because now that the UNESCO World Heritage status has gone, Everton plan to submit a revised planning application increasing the height of the stadium and with a new capacity of 65,000.

The above of course is totally made up, but hey, if the papers can write what they want so can I.

Peter Mills
5 Posted 19/10/2021 at 23:25:46
I was disappointed when Dan was dropped from the project, he was very impressive at the presentation at the Titanic Hotel.

Will Mabon
6 Posted 19/10/2021 at 23:30:30
The algorithm is really strutting its stuff the last couple of days.
Derek Thomas
7 Posted 20/10/2021 at 01:26:36
Can he play Centre Midfield?
Alan J Thompson
8 Posted 20/10/2021 at 03:58:42
Derek(#7); Can he play CM? He's all over this park.
Mike Gaynes
9 Posted 20/10/2021 at 05:08:19
I just hope he's match fit.
Jim Bennings
10 Posted 20/10/2021 at 07:07:28
Meis brought back to make sure the stadium has no holes in so when our team sinks like a brick in the Mersey, that stays afloat!
Derek Knox
11 Posted 20/10/2021 at 07:09:30
Welcome back Dan, you'll be just like a new signing, hoping you didn't snap all your pencils in disgust either. The way this Club treats individuals and fans too at times almost beggars belief.

Don't suppose like many of the ludicrous decisions that have been made in the past over several issues, most importantly the buffoonery in transfers and ontracts, we will ever know who is behind all this. Wouldn't mind a small wager that our current Board has two making such decisions, or fuelling the fires that led to them.

Where's Don Alexander when you need back-up?

Barry Rathbone
12 Posted 20/10/2021 at 08:50:42
You just wonder what level of thinking exists at Everton. Either Meis was incorrectly binned in the first place or another cock-up has resulted in a rapid back-track. It seems amateur hour occurs every hour of every day at this club.
Michael Kenrick
13 Posted 20/10/2021 at 11:20:14
That might be a tad harsh, Barry.

I wonder if what we are seeing here is a difference in the way things are done? At the time that Laing O'Rourke were engaged to push the project through to completion, the point was made that this is the way it's commonly done in the UK, with the Engineers stepping in and the Architect dropping out of the process.

That was certainly a huge shock for Meis, and it sounded like he had not worked in the UK previously, so perhaps he was unware of "this is how we do things here".

I may be wrong but I got the impression that the Architects are much more engaged with the full project delivery "from soup to nuts" in the USA, and that Meis had no comprehension of being dropped from the venture when it went into construction.

This may in fact now be the club saying to Laing O'Rourke and the rest of the engineering and construction team that he should be kept on for continuity and other probably numerous benefits… but, if the UK operators are not used to having the original architect on the team, then it may not go well.

Peter Mills
14 Posted 20/10/2021 at 18:14:07
Just a hunch – Dan is being very diplomatic, the original design has been in danger of being ‘beat up', and he is being re-engaged to see that it isn't.
Paul Birmingham
15 Posted 20/10/2021 at 20:47:08
Benefit of the doubt in my view, the club, may be embracing that Meis has the design, in his mind and the clear vision and drive to ensure it’s delivered to specification and cost.

But in the current global climate, all construction projects are being squeezed with material costs rising sky high, and potentially extended build costs.

But that’s my nice to believe, but I really have no idea why Meis is being brought back, but this for me is welcome.

May be the club can’t take more risk in a season that will be challenging in view of a first team injury list that takes some digestion.

How and why the level of injuries Everton players get remains to the jury.

But beat Watford and then regroup for Wolves.

Rob Halligan
16 Posted 20/10/2021 at 20:55:04
Further video from BMD showing the start of laying the foundations around the actual dock...

Derek Knox
17 Posted 20/10/2021 at 21:20:45
Cheers Rob for the link, very interesting, just remind me, who said it would never happen ? :-)
Rob Halligan
18 Posted 20/10/2021 at 21:25:35
John Terry I think, Derek. Awful lot of wasted time and money for something that's not going to happen!!
Eric Myles
19 Posted 21/10/2021 at 04:26:03
Michael #13, as it's a Design and Build contract, the Contractor will have full responsibility for the architectural side of things using his own architect team.

But the Owner should also have a Project Management Consultant team of architects and engineers to ensure that the project is built to the design and quality concepts in the specifications.

It's most likely then that the Meis team are being considered for this PMC role in overseeing the Contractor.

Keir McGuffog
20 Posted 21/10/2021 at 14:02:11
Could it be that the recent announcement of safe standing to be trialed in the Premier League requires some further work on the design? I know the original design was to accommodate the likely move in this direction but there may be further requirements that need taking into consideration.
Barry Hesketh
21 Posted 21/10/2021 at 21:00:53
Chief executive Denise Barrett-Baxendale has told Everton supporters that ticket prices for the remaining seasons at Goodison Park have to reflect the financial reality the club are faced with but insists fan input remains paramount to such decisions.

Writing in an open letter to all registered Everton supporters, Professor Barrett-Baxendale said: “We remain focused on achieving our footballing objectives, living up to our club’s motto and delivering the very best matchday service and experience.

“To realise those ambitions, it is essential for the club to increase and maximise commercial and matchday revenues.

“Our new stadium will be a gamechanger for the club commercially. It will also afford us the opportunity to give greater choice and flexibility for supporters.
Future Ticket Prices

Give us a decent team and the chances are that most would be willing to pay the required price, but continue to give us what we've seen in the last few years and there's a chance that some might decide to give purchasing a ticket a miss, also the continued movement of matches from traditional Saturday's to any other day of the week is a big turn-off for many.

Brent Stephens
22 Posted 21/10/2021 at 21:16:51
Barry #21 I don't know if you received the questionnaire today and tried to complete it. I got a few questions into it and it just kept saying I hadn't yet answered a question that I had answered. So I was in a loop I couldn't get out of!
Barry Hesketh
23 Posted 21/10/2021 at 21:21:52
Brent @22

Have you tried to link back to the survey, it might not allow you to, but if you do manage to, it may allow you to continue? I tried to, but because I have completed it in full, it prevents my access to it.

I completed it shortly before I read that piece in the Echo, the only question I had issues with was the one where you had to put your preferences in order from 1-10 from memory the question about the most important things to the least important things about the matchday experience.

The travel questions were a bit closed as a Saturday match for me is entirely different from an evening or a Sunday game. I wish they would broaden those choices out a bit in the future.

Brent Stephens
24 Posted 21/10/2021 at 21:48:28
Barry, I looped back within the q'aire, to no avail. So I opened up the survey again from within the email received. Same problem.

Emailed the club. Bill is crying about it.

Don Alexander
25 Posted 21/10/2021 at 22:18:41
Derek (#11), re BMD the owner(s?)/boardroom have for once not already created something totally inadequate at enormous expense. Makes a nice change.

I just hope that Mr Meis is a bloke with a vision that's actually impressive, achievable, and cost-effective. Just who among our "leaders" possesses the ability to even recognise those factors is a moot point though. Hell, they can't even organise their own in-house TV coverage of our youth football or internet surveys of their own club members after all (see above).


Nicholas Ryan
26 Posted 21/10/2021 at 23:11:55
DBB talks about "a more flexible and dynamic pricing model...". First of all, why can't these management types speak English?

Secondly, if the real message is: 'Prices are going to double and you're screwed', why don't they have the guts to come out and say so?

John Chambers
27 Posted 21/10/2021 at 23:44:10
I can't see why anybody is expressing surprise at the news that ticket prices are going up. We've complained for years about the lack of commercial awareness, well I think the move to BMD is the catalyst for change.

An earlier questionnaire went through pricing models for BMD and, from memory, there was nothing under around £750 available. If you look at today's prices, our most expensive season ticket, excluding lounges, corporates etc, is £565. I wouldn't be surprised to see increases of 10% or so a year for the next 3 years to get us up to that sort of level.

For info, Liverpool's cheapest season ticket for this season was £685.

Barry Hesketh
28 Posted 22/10/2021 at 05:24:33
John @27,

I agree that a season ticket holder at Goodison is getting a good deal financially, however, if as the Esk has argued for in the past the club should look to increase prices by circa 40%, I personally and I'm sure many others would have an issue with that.

It's one thing increasing ticket prices for a shiny new stadium, but increasing prices at that rate for Goodison for some of the obstructed and not-so-good seats would put a few off investing in a season ticket. An extra £200 for a current £500 season ticket, would generate an extra £6m a season given 30k season tickets were of that price bracket, enough to pay someone earning similar to Yerry Mina a year's salary.

I haven't tried the club's new selling your ticket, if you can't attend a game, facility, but I hear it is extremely ponderous and there's no guarantee that the club will sell your unwanted ticket on unless and until Everton FC has sold its own tickets.

Having seen the latest raft of fixtures that have been rearranged for TV coverage there are possibly half of the games at Goodison, between now and the New Year, that I'll be watching at home, rather than attending the ground; that on its own is enough to dissuade me from renewing my ticket for next season with or without price increases.

Barry Hesketh
29 Posted 22/10/2021 at 13:21:01
It's now official as according to the OS:

Dan Meis, the concept architect for Everton’s new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock, will continue his association with Everton’s new stadium project as he takes up a new guardianship role.

Meis’s initial role in the stadium project came to a natural end in the summer of 2020 as the scheme moved from the concept to technical phases. Working under Everton’s Stadium Development Director Colin Chong and alongside the project leads from construction partner Laing O’Rourke and architects BDP Pattern, Meis’s role will involve reviewing the technical construction specifications and engaging the compliance team ahead of each stage of development to ensure the original design concept remains in place throughout the build.

Confirming Meis’s return to the project, Everton Chairman Bill Kenwright said: “Dan has been an important part of our stadium journey so far and we are pleased he has accepted this new role.

“In working alongside both our in-house and external teams, Dan will be joining some of the best technical talents in the country throughout the exciting construction phase of the project.”

Dan Meis

Danny O’Neill
30 Posted 23/10/2021 at 11:22:59
I see the Liverpool City region is getting a £710M slice of the £6.9Bn the Government is dishing out to the city regions for transport improvements. Naturally Manchester is top of the pile to the tune of about £300M more.

It looks as thought Liverpool's is going to be used to build new and stations in Liverpool and Runcorn as well as some work in St Helens.

Come on, give us an iconic Monorail running along the iconic waterfront, with stops at the Albert Dock, the Pier Head and destination Bramley Moore.

Alan McGuffog
31 Posted 23/10/2021 at 21:44:40
Danny, after this afternoon, I should think laying on a couple of eight-seaters would suffice.
Derek Taylor
32 Posted 24/10/2021 at 20:01:32
Dan was always coming back – the money just had to be right!
Dean Cooper
33 Posted 26/10/2021 at 00:57:02
Be just like a new signing.

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