President Nicos Anastasiades presided over the inauguration of the new stadium in Limassol on the evening of November 25. The new stadium, formerly called Limassol Arena by the media, was named Alphamega Stadium after its opening.
UEFA’s highest standards.
This is the first soccer stadium in Cyprus, which meets the criteria of the fourth (highest) category of UEFA stadiums. This means that the pitch is able to host European and World league games, the Champions League and the Europa League. Alphamega Stadium has a capacity of 10,700 people (originally it was planned a larger capacity of 13,000). It will be the base for the three soccer clubs of Limassol: AEL, Apollon and Aris.
Plans to build a new stadium began to be discussed 10 years ago, when Aris and AEL decided that they needed a new soccer pitch. At that stage, Apollo FC planned to build their own stadium separately from the others. However, due to the 2013 crisis, the funding situation of the project changed dramatically. In 2014, Apollo joined the initiative of two other clubs. Architect Petros Kontaridis prepared the project. But the budget of 45 million euros turned out to be unaffordable for the teams and they turned to the Cyprus Sports Organization for help.
It took almost four years to build.
In order to get funding from the state, they needed approval from the EU Directorate General for Competition. In 2018, the directorate refused to allow Cyprus to finance the construction of the stadium from the budget – this would have created a privileged position for the three Limassol clubs compared to the rest of the country. Therefore, the stadium site and the future stadium itself have been transferred to the ownership of the Cyprus Sports Organization. It will give the soccer clubs the management of the sports facility.
Construction work on the site began in January 2019 and was scheduled to be completed in mid-2021. But a number of problems, particularly unstable soil, caused delays in construction. The opening was pushed back to Aug. 25, 2022, then to Nov. 16, 2022. Eventually the stadium opened on Nov. 25.
About 80 projects worth nearly 500 million euros.
The same day, the president visited a number of other important infrastructure projects. In the morning he visited a waste recycling plant and a site where anti-flooding works are carried out. The head of state also opened an employment center for adults and visited a new municipal center for community programs, housed in the historic buildings of the municipal apartment buildings. Nicos Anastasiades then participated in the ceremony of laying the foundation stone of Technical School No. 2 in Limassol and in the opening of the Vocational Training Institute. In the afternoon, the president witnessed the opening of the new classrooms of the Faculty of Fine Arts of TEPAC University and the administrative offices of the university.
The head of state noted with satisfaction that over the past 10 years, 79 projects with a budget of 490 million euros have been carried out in Limassol.