LIVERPOOL FC's new stadium plans have finally been given the go-ahead.
The development includes a £16m package of regeneration cash from the Northwest Development Agency for north Liverpool.
A further £9m is to be spent by Objective One to restore and improve Stanley Park in Anfield.
The money was confirmed yesterday when, after an eight-hour meeting, the council's planning committee agreed by six votes to two to support the Reds' new stadium..
A total of £26m of funding is linked to the new stadium and a further £20m has already been earmarked for north Liverpool, regardless of LFC's plans.
As well as the 60,000-seat stadium, the club will turn the current ground into Anfield Plaza - including shops, offices, a hotel and residential and community uses, plus new public open space.
The final decision on the scheme now rests with the John Prescott's Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
Liverpool's chief executive Rick Parry last night said the club and community could now move forward.
He said: "The message we've been receiving loud and clear for the past three years from the local community has been that the continuing uncertainty around the stadium, the area and the park was not good for anyone. "Now, with today's announcement, we can all move forward. Today's verdict will now be passed on to John
Prescott's office and we will know in a month's time if there are any objections.
"We're not getting carried away and building isn't going to suddenly start tomorrow but it is a very positive decision for both ourselves and the local community."
Council leader Cllr Mike Storey said: "As a result of this decision, I'm hopeful that we will now be able to push on with the regeneration of Anfield and Breckfield, which will lead to new jobs, new homes and new investment."
John Roberts, Sports Director at AFL, the architects which designed the new Anfield, said: "The stadium will truly be at the heart of the local community but it will also be energy efficient, capable of generating revenue on non-match days and a fantastic environment in which to play and watch football."
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