The NFL and Tottenham Hotspur have announced this week that they have reached agreement for a minimum of two games per year to be played during a 10-year partnership at the English Premier League team’s new stadium in London.
The state-of-the-art stadium, due to open in the summer of 2018, will feature a retractable grass field with an artificial surface underneath that would be used for NFL games. This innovative field will add greater flexibility in the scheduling of games, with the NFL having its own playing surface for games held at this venue. This field will be multi-use and capable of hosting other sporting, entertainment and community events.
Both sports will have dedicated facilities ensuring that the new stadium, designed with a focus on atmosphere, will deliver the optimum experience for both teams and fans. It will be one of the most environmentally-sustainable in the UK and also include a clear focus on accessibility via public transportation.
NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, said:
With growing enthusiasm for the NFL in the United Kingdom, we are committed to hosting NFL games in world-class venues and are excited to partner with Tottenham Hotspur to play games at their future stadium. We share a vision and commitment to creating the best experience for our teams, fans and the local community.
The stadium is part of the Northumberland Development Project, which sits at the heart and is the flagship scheme and catalyst for world-class regeneration in North Tottenham, that spans over 130 acres and delivers significant benefits for the local community.
In addition to the minimum of two games per year at the new Tottenham site, other NFL games may take place at different venues in the UK during the span of the 10-year agreement.
Daniel Levy, Chairman of Tottenham Hotspur, said:
We have an opportunity now to deliver one of the most unique sports, leisure and entertainment venues in the world, bringing together the EPL and NFL for the first time. The socio- economic benefits this will bring to the area will be immense and demonstrates our commitment to the regeneration of this priority borough in London.
We have always underlined the importance of public sector support for the long-term regeneration of the area. This support is now clearly in evidence in the masterplans that have been brought forward by the London Borough of Haringey, both through the Northumberland Park project to the east of the stadium and the High Road West scheme. These plans, alongside the commitments made by the Mayor of London and the Greater London Authority to infrastructure and public realm investment, and with the support of Central Government, demonstrate that there is now a collective public and private sector desire to deliver lasting change to the area.
This was an important factor for the NFL when they agreed to bring their hugely popular sport to Tottenham. I am delighted that we have succeeded in attracting them. We have a compelling and exciting partnership that will play its part as we begin transforming this area of Tottenham.
Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, welcomed the agreement, “Anyone who has seen American Football at Wembley Stadium cannot fail to have been thrilled by the spectacle, and the wise heads that run the NFL have clearly not missed the fact that Londoners are going absolutely gangbusters for Gridiron.
“We are already working very closely with the NFL, including on plans to get more Londoners involved in the sport, and we believe that building on the success of NFL at Wembley by staging more games in an area of the city that has been earmarked for a massive programme of economic regeneration and investment makes perfect sense.
“Touchdowns in Tottenham can only add to our reputation as a global sporting powerhouse, and help us take another step towards our goal of having a permanent NFL franchise here in London.”
Claire Kober, Leader, Haringey Council, added:
It’s tremendous news that the NFL wants to come to Tottenham, joining Spurs in bolstering our borough’s reputation for world-class sport.
This huge vote of confidence further underlines Tottenham’s future as London’s next great destination, and shows real progress in our dedicated plan to bring economic growth to Haringey – with thousands of fans spending money in local businesses and creating new jobs for our residents.
In addition to bringing thousands more visitors to Tottenham, having millions of viewers from around the world tuning into live sports from the new Spurs stadium will undoubtedly put our borough on the international stage.
This has been a great news week for the Club, who only yesterday unveiled their updated designs and plans for the Northumberland Development Project, which will be submitted to the London Borough of Haringey in the coming weeks. The scheme includes a new Populous-designed stadium that will be the first of its kind in the world, as well as a hotel and visitor attractions.