Arsenal complete Emirates regeneration project

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Arsene Wenger today officially opened the Arsenal Hub by slotting home a penalty at the facility’s new 4G indoor pitch.

Situated by Benwell Road (50-yards from the Armoury shop), the Hub – which houses classrooms, meeting space and a learning centre – is set to deliver 50 hours of sports and education sessions to 1,500 local people each week.

It’s opening marks the final piece in the jigsaw of the Gunners’ £390 million Emirates Stadium regeneration; a mammoth project that started in the late nineties with a quest for a suitable site and has culminated in the creation of 3,000 homes, a new recycling centre and a shiny 60,000 stadium.

The hub’s completion also coincides with the 30th anniversary of Arsenal in the Community; a fitting tribute to an organisation that has worked so tirelessly on behalf of Islington locals.

Arsene is the third high-profile visitor to the site in the last few days – Per Mertesacker and Francis Coquelin also dropped in for a kickabout on Friday afternoon – and he had the following to say at the opening ceremony:

“The Arsenal Hub will be a fantastic facility for our Arsenal in the Community team and the young people they work with every day.

“As a club, I believe we have an important role to play in the local area and I am very proud of the positive impact we are able to make. The new facility will help us do even more.”

It’s amazing to think it’s nearly nine years since Dennis Bergkamp’s testimonial kicked-off life at our new home. Looking back on that first day it all felt a bit weird. With Highburian cliques scattered and old routines tinkered with everybody had a slightly lost look on their faces.

Sure there was excitement – not least because Oleg Luzhny was back and we all got free t-shirts – but there was also a sense we’d been dropped in an alien world. It was Arsenal, but not as we knew it.

Sure the Emirates will never be Highbury – newly set concrete can’t be injected with 93 years of history or Art Deco handsomeness – but the place is finally starting to feel like home. I think we can all agree that last year’s FA Cup triumph certainly helped.

It’s a long, hard road that has been walked to get to this point so a tip of the cap to all those who’ve been involved. We really are very lucky to have what we have.

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CB
CB

We are a classy club. Not many around, especially in London.

Cheddya
Cheddya

You say that, but Chelsea are the only club I know of that pay the living wage to all employees.
Still hope our club follows suit.

Hutch
Hutch

Agreed. Sure this can be rectified quite quickly, even if it does cost a few hundred grand a year more.
For a club of this stature and in one of the most expensive cities to live in, any person employed directly (or indirectly) should not be earning less than £9.15 per hour.

AN other
AN other

All clubs have agreed to put that in practice. Chelsea has just done that earlier than rest.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

This is all very honourable, but the people who work on a match day (i.e. the ones that aren’t currently getting paid LLW) don’t rely on their pay to survive, so it’s a bit spurious to suggest that they need to be paid at £9.15 an hour.

The idea of LLW is that it is the amount required to be able to live in London, so the fact that some people supplement their everyday income with what they are paid by Arsenal (or whichever club they work for) means that they are not reliant on that pay to survive.

But sure, it’s a nice thing to do.

Hurensohn
Hurensohn

Get signing the petition to have all PL clubs pay the living wage – https://www.change.org/p/premier-league-pay-all-of-your-staff-a-living-wage

gammhunn
gammhunn

One of the many many things that make me feel proud to be an Arsenal supporter. Very nice article.

Modhabobo
Modhabobo

People may mock as when we talk about the ‘Arsenal way’ but this shows what a quality club is like. Do things properly!

InjuryGod
InjuryGod

This is The Arsenal! Such a bright future ahead with visionary leaders at the helm!

Dara
Dara

Home

Nigerian
Nigerian

Im saving up money for a visit sometime next. Maybe I’ll be there to witness us lifting the BPL trophy at the end of next season. Can’t wait!

GoonerN16

Congratulations to all involved from the inception of The Arsenal Hub to its completion. Class! COYG!!!

Chucho

Perfect technique

Chucho

Brilliant technique from the prof

Heisenberg
Heisenberg

This is his legacy and in years to come we will look back at his work, as a masterpiece.

Great technique by Arsene Wenger for the penalty!

rch
rch

Sir Arsene

WengersNoseHair
WengersNoseHair

Amen to that.

Ozil+alexis=goals

Was wenger ever a player?

jenkins 1234
jenkins 1234

Yep, he was a midfielder I believe, definitely makes a better manager than he was as a player

palace gunner
palace gunner

Also this will bring the young who love football to have leisure and sports skills coyg.

Cygan
Cygan

Proud to be a gooner. Planning a visit soon.

Clock-End Mike
Clock-End Mike

Highbury was Chapman’s lasting heritage, along with raising Arsenal to the pinnacle of class and achievement in the 1930s.
Ashburton Grove will be Wenger’s equally long-lasting heritage, along with maintaining and even lifting higher the pride and unique class of the Arsenal, and giving to the fans that very special achievement of the invincible season while playing the most attractive football seen in this country.

NCGooner
NCGooner

“Thumbs up” for using “Ashburton Grove” 🙂

Goon
Goon

Emirates should be paying us a lot more. I am so used to calling it ’emirates stadium’.

AN other
AN other

Home sweet home. Blogs your last sentence sums up everything. We are indeed very lucky to have such a great club.