2018 is the 100 year anniversary of Woodrow Wilson's "14 Points" Speech, the inaugural implementation of Daylight Savings Time in the U.S., and the brutal last offensive of Germany on the Western Front, the Second Battle of the Marne — it is also the year that Tottenham plan to open their proposed new stadium. 2018 seems an age away, but in reality it is just around the corner. Spurs have already played a quarter (26.3% to be exact) of their 2015-16 Premier League fixtures, thus the 2018-19 season is closer than one might think. It is for this reason that supporters must begin to pay attention to the developments concerning the NDP's construction.
In Spurs' Haringey Council Planning Application they have broken down the building of their new grounds into four different phases. Below is an explanation of each of the planned stages of development. Of note is the fact that Tottenham wish to stay in White Hart Lane for as long as possible, but even in their planning application they are resigned to the fact that the 2017-18 season will be played in an unfamiliar venue.
- Demolish all remaining buildings on the stadium site
- Construct new West, North and northern half of East stands
- Construct all essential stadium accommodation at Level 0 including players and team staff suite, media centre, catering staff accreditation, central production kitchen, delivery yard, stadium and ground maintenance, police holding area, incoming utilities and plant rooms
- Install temporary repeater panels for key life safety equipment, as required, to enable initial commissioning of these systems
- Construct new Tottenham Experience along High Road
- Construct Hotel at junction of High Road and Park Lane
This phase has already begun. The proverbial Archway Sheet Metal Works building has already been demolished and much of the surrounding area north of White Hart Lane is already dug up. That said, this stage is still in its infancy. There is a plethora of ambitions to check off the list before White Hart Lane is brought down. Tottenham are actually planning to build the West, North, and northern half of the East stand before leveling Spurs iconic home, a huge endeavor. They project to build the entirety of the basement structure that will be accessible to people, as the lower level of the South stand will be the holding area of the infamous retractable pitch. Included in this area are the locker rooms, maintenance structures, and culinary center. Outside of the venue, both the Tottenham Experience, Spurs vision of a vibrant corridor of shops and entertainment on High Road, and a hotel at the intersections of High Road and Park Lane will be constructed.
- Demolish existing stadium
- Complete cable-net roof
- Construct south stand and remaining portion of the eaststand and associated podium
- Install pitch and complete associated pitchside services
- Complete installation of life safety services and re-commission where necessary
Certainly the most depressing of the three stages of development. This will be the moment when White Hart Lane is reduced to rubble. 119 years at a venue is something special, it will be an undoubtedly traumatic event to witness when it is destroyed. Like a glorious phoenix though, Spurs' home will rise again in what will surely be a different, but equally as grand of a form (save the "naming rights" bit; that corporate nonsense will suck). The other key development in this section is the construction of the south stand and its retractable pitch, the two most notorious features of the new stadium.
- Construct remaining elements of the southern development adjoining Park Lane
Not much to see here folks, move along.
So there you have it. While there is no timeline attached, we can assume that Phase 1 will be completed by, at the very latest, May of 2017. The pace of construction will probably dictate whether or not Tottenham will spend the latter half of 2017 in another stadium. As White Hart Lane needs to be removed for Phase 2 to begin, there is an outside possibility that Tottenham will leave White Hart Lane before the 2016-17 season ends. Regardless of the date, enjoy the remaining games at Spurs' historic ground (or get to the stadium before it shuts down!), there are a finite number of them left.