Horizon 2024 project brings new stadium to Royal Charleroi Sporting Club

As part of our third 2020 ESSMA Stadium Development Report, we discussed the Horizon 2024 project of R. Charleroi S.C. with Patrick M. Martin, who has been involved in the development of the project since the start.

Horizon 2024

The project included plans for a brand-new, multifunctional stadium for R. Charleroi S.C. as part of a major development for the city of Charleroi. The stadium will replace the club’s long-time home ground, Stade du Pays de Charleroi, and will offer a 20,000 capacity for football matches and up to 25,000 for concerts. 

The new stadium is projected to cost €60 million and is part of the city’s “Sambre Ouest Masterplan”, which has been divided into four distinct elements for the redevelopment of this part of Charleroi by 2035.                  

“Sustainability will also be an important part of this development, as we have included a “High Environmental Value” plan in our list of demands. This includes 14 environmentally friendly and sustainable targets that have to be respected by the architects.” 

Which multifunctional facilities will be integrated in the stadium?

P. Martin: “Of course the club has the ambition to attract non-matchday events in the new stadium. In order to prepare the stadium as best as we can for these events, it has been designed with certain multifunctional aspects in mind such as retractable seating and a closed roof."

What will the new stadium include in terms of fan experience and hospitality facilities?

P. Martin: “In terms of fan experience there are a number of improvements that we look at such as a special fan zone, better lighting and sound systems, new integrated technologies, etc. but this is still too early to tell and will have to fit within the estimated budget. What we can say as off this moment, is that the North stand will be constructed as a single-tiered stand, inspired by the “Gelbe Wand” in Borussia Dortmund’s Signal Iduna Park."

What are the next steps in the construction process and has this been affected by COVID-19?

P. Martin: “We are currently still performing the in-depth study for the development which will take a total of 17 months. Soon after that, we hope to start construction of the stadium, which should last no longer than 20 months with a projected delivery date in 2024. The timeline was somewhat affected by COVID-19, but only minorly as it was mostly down to the fact that was harder to organise meetings and have discussions in person.”

Read the full interview and learn more about the Horizon 2024 project