- Dens Park
Dens Park Stadium Dens
Dundee playing St. Johnstone at Dens during the 2006–07 season
Location Dundee, Scotland Coordinates Opened 1899 Surface Grass pitch Capacity 12,085 Tenants Dundee F.C. (1899–Present)
The stadium is the home of Dundee F.C. and has a capacity of 11,856. Uniquely, the stadium shares part of the same road (Sandeman Street) as Tannadice Park, which is the home of city rivals Dundee United F.C.. In May 2009 it was reported that the stadium is owned by local businessman John Bennett, who despite having invested heavily in Dundee F.C. has rejoined the Dundee United board, having previously been a director there until September 2008.
History and Major Games
The club moved to 'Dens' from their first stadium at Carolina Port in 1899. Over the years, the ground has been redeveloped, with the construction of the near-identical Bobby Cox and Bob Shankly stands, which sit at either end of the ground. Typically the former is given over to home supporters, and the latter to visiting supporters.
It has held two Scottish League Cup finals and on 25 November 2007, held its first Scottish Challenge Cup final. Dens also has the distinction of being one of only two stadia within the city of Dundee to have held full Scottish Internationals, having held three. The other Dundee ground to have held an international was Carolina Port.
Following Dundee's successful league campaign during the 1998/99 season, Dens park had to be redeveloped to adhere to the new SPL seated capacity guidelines. Dundee F.C. were therefore required to redevelop the East and West terraces. Barr Stadium Construction Ltd were charged with the task of removing the existing concrete terraces and the construction of two, 3,000 seater stands. The stands were built in a record time of 82 days for the start of the 1999/2000 season. Dens Park was the first stadium in the city to have its floodlights upgraded in the 21st century.
The single-tier stands were named after Bobby Cox and Bob Shankly, names chosen by the fans. Each holds 3,000 supporters with snack bars, toilets and wheelchair access. A new Dundee F.C. Club Shop and ticket office were also built. The Bobby Cox Stand and the 'Derry' usually houses Home supporters while the Bob Shankly houses the away supporters.
Undersoil heating was installed in 2005.
In late 2007, Dundee F.C. announced plans to sell much of the land south of the pitch to a housing developer. As part of the plans, new flats/houses would be constructed on the presently unused portion of the land and a new South Stand would be constructed, running alongside the pitch at no cost to the club. This would significantly increase the capacity of the stadium and would upgrade facilities at the club. Dundee Chief Executive Dave Mackinnon announced that the club should have "positive news" regarding the project, early in 2008. However nothing more was heard on the matter and at present there are no plans to make any changes to the ground.
Future of Dens Park
In 2002, plans were drawn up for a new stadium to be built in Dundee, as part of Scotland's bid to host the 2008 European Football Championship. This stadium would have been shared by Dundee and near-neighbours Dundee United. The stadium was planned for construction on a new site at Caird Park. Therefore, both Dundee and Dundee United would have said goodbye to their historic homes. However, Scotland were not successful in their bid, which meant these plans were put on ice for the time being. They could be resurrected should Scotland launch a successful bid for future European Championships. However, both clubs have expressed strong views which oppose a ground sharing agreement. Both clubs had shown interest in a new ground sharing arrangement that could take place if Ukraine and Poland fail to meet UEFA's expectations for hosting Euro 2012, however since Scotland withdrew its bid due to economic conditions, this is no longer the case.
- ^ http://www.scottishgrounds.co.uk/dundee.htm
- ^ Roache, Ian (25 May 2009). "Startling claims over Dens Park ownership". The Courier (Dundee). http://www.thecourier.co.uk/output/2009/05/25/newsstory13192952t0.asp. Retrieved 25 May 2009.
- ^ "Minister and clubs back Euro bid". BBC Sport. 2008-06-07. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/scotland/7440929.stm. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
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