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Tottenham demolishes major hurdle to new stadium

It's really gone.

It's done. Tottenham Hotspur have finally, and emphatically, closed the book on the Archway Sheet Metal saga, demolishing the building of the local north London company that until recent months operated across the street from White Hart Lane and was a major thorn in Spurs' side as they planned the construction of their new stadium.



This is a screencap taken (by yours truly) from Spurs' Stadium TV live cam about two days ago. The Archway building is clearly visible in the background of the photo.

Archway Before 2


And here's a screencap from the same cam taken today.

Archway After

Archway, as you recall, was the source of some major consternation as Spurs planned the Northumberland Development Project. The local business, owned by the Josif family, refused to sell their land to Tottenham over the span of years, leading to heated confrontations with Tottenham ownership. This was a big problem, since the site of the Archway building would be approximately at center circle of the new stadium.

After numerous rounds of negotiations, legal battles, and appeals, Tottenham was able to gain approval for a Compulsory Purchase Order, the UK equivalent of eminent domain, to buy the property from the Josif family, but not before the building mysteriously caught fire and burned, causing significant damage to the building. Police at the time called the fire "suspicious" but the club itself was never implicated as having had anything to do with the fire. Spurs have reportedly owned the parcel of land outright since last June, but the building has only now been demolished.

There's lots of room for argument and disagreement between well-meaning Spurs fans about the Archway saga and how it was handled, which we're not going to get into here. It did, however, involve real people with deeply held beliefs which should be respected. It's a minor thing, but the demolition of the Archway Sheet Building is as much a symbol of the new stadium as any conceptual drawings or descriptions of the NDP "scheme." It's been there throughout the whole process, a visible reminder of what it took for Tottenham to begin work on this new era at the club.

Now, everything hits home in a real and tangible way. Archway Sheet Metal is gone. The stadium is really coming.