The ongoing growth of the Turkish Airlines Euroleague fan base was the theme again on Tuesday when plans were unveiled to build a new and bigger home for FC Barcelona Lassa, one of the signature clubs of the competition. Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu made the official presentation of what will be called Nou Palau Blaugrana, a 12,000-seat multi-purpose arena scheduled to open for the 2019-20 season. The 2003 and 2010 Euroleague champions have been playing at their current home, Palau Blaugrana, for all but two seasons since 1971. The new arena will be located near the club's famous football stadium, Camp Nou. Also taking part in the arena presentation were FC Barcelona Lassa head coach Xavi Pascual and club icon Juan Carlos Navarro, the Euroleague's all-time scoring king.
The decision to build a new arena for FC Barcelona Lassa responds to the same market trends that have seen several Euroleague teams upgrade to more spacious and better-equipped arenas in recent seasons. Barcelona has seen its ticket sales for Euroleague games grow in each of the last three seasons as fans choose among a range of multi-game packages and premium seats with hospitality that will become even more attractive at Nou Palau Blaugrana.
"With FC Barcelona Lassa's announcement today, we see again how increased demand among fans for Euroleague games and the improved economic condition of our clubs are creating opportunities like this to make our sport grow in the long term," said Jordi Bertomeu, Euroleague Basketball's President and CEO, who attended the arena presentation. "The fans, of course, are at the center of any commitment like this, and we can be sure that both those who attend games at Nou Palau Blaugrana and TV audiences will have a higher-quality experience to enjoy."
Two leading architecture firms, one from Spain and one from the United States, have been contracted to build Nou Palau Blaugrana after having won a public contest. The arena, which will feature a groundbreaking asymmetric design, will have all the best modern amenities, including 18 VIP boxes and two skybars with court views. The project will also feature a smaller 2,000-seat venue and an 800-seat ice rink for the Barcelona hockey club and figure skating sections.