Stadium History (4)

The days following the opening of the stadium, Santiago Bernabéu continued to receive hundreds of compliments from all over the world. Perhaps others had been content with what has been achieved, but he did not. In his mind was brewing new projects. Bernabeu was convinced (and time would agree) that Real Madrid was a feeling that grew day by day, so this field was still small to accommodate such a growing social mass. It was therefore necessary to complete the termination of the arena with the implementation of the "second phase", which was primarily aimed at overcoming the barrier of the 125,000 spectators in total capacity.

Colosal figures

The official start of the works was set March 24, 1953, although they started much earlier. Even during the celebration of its golden jubilee, the March 6, 1952 the club was plunged into full reform of the stadium. The work was completed on July 19, 1954. The magnitudes of the materials used are very close to those of the first phase. In total, 26,000 cubic meters concrete were used, mass and reinforced what were necessary formwork 131,000 meters square, round iron 2,000 tons and 6,000 tons of cement. For the financing was used, the unconditional support of the social mass of the club. The 43,000 partners that Real Madrid had, quickly covered the obligations, which amounted to 12 million pesetas (12,000 euro). On May 15, 1972 was completely canceled the operation to finance the stadium.

Brand new opening: 125,000 spectators in the stands

On June 19, 1954, the New Chamartin was a fact. To celebrate the completion of the works was arranged a friendly match against Athletic Bilbao.The 125,000 tickets were distributed as follows: 7,149 covered seats, outdoor seating 24,079, 19,000 covered feet and 74,772 uncovered feet. Now club could claim that the stadium was the largest and most modern in the continent. Among the many personalities who attended the opening ceremony, M. Williams, a renowned English architect said: "arguably, the best stadium in Europe."

Santiago Bernabeu Stadium 1954
Santiago Bernabeu Stadium 1954

Name: Santiago Bernabéu

Stadium lacked only one thing: a name. The issue was discussed on January 4, 1955 in the general assembly delegates. The president, in his modesty, proposed several alternatives: New Chamartin Stadium, Castellana ... but the audience were clear. The voting was unanimous: from that moment, the field was renamed “Santiago Bernabeu Stadium”, something that never convinced the president. He was not comfortable with change.

The brightness of electric lighting

In subsequent years, the electric light would be the best-known work, as necessary as in sports grounds. The new facility, which will make the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in the best illuminated of the world, developed a light output greater than the Stadium of Los Angeles.

Meets its silver jubilee

On December 14, 1972, the first twenty-five years of the stadium were celebrated. To commemorate this event a friendly match was organized, again against Os Belenenses Lisbon, which served to pay tribute to Francisco Gento, in his farewell as a football player. During this event, the club became a pioneer by inaugurating the first electronic scoreboard installed in a field of Spanish football. On March 2, 1977, the stadium returned to spruce up to celebrate the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the founding of Real Madrid.

1973 project: the stadium was never built

It's funny, but the club came to consider down the stadium and change of location. This occurred in 1973, but the story came from afar. In 1964, a plan involving the construction of a new stadium in the north of the city was advanced. The main reason was the expensive maintenance of a building that had not been remodeled since 1953. The initiative did not succeed because the legal imposing that entailed, the Mayor of Madrid said.

Farewell to Bernabéu, the best president ever

On June 2, 1978 will be a sad reminder date for Real Madrid. Santiago Bernabéu died. The chapel was installed in the stadium. Luis de Carlos will be his successor. The stadium was remodeled due to logical damage and to accommodate new events. The next World Cup, to be held in Spain, will be the perfect impetus to revive the stadium.

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