A brief history of the Allianz Arena

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Reconstruct or build from scratch? Fröttmaning or Riem? Lengthy debates preceded the rise of the Allianz Arena in the north of Munich. On the occasion of the ten-year milestone fcbayern.de summarises the origin and development of the Arena to this day in 25 steps:

March 1997: The Reds do well on the field of play. Giovanni Trapattoni's team are about to wrap up the championship title, but the fans demand a new, dedicated football stadium. “Watching football should be fun and a great experience for everyone,” says Bayern president Franz Beckenbauer. An entirely new construction project is out of question for the city of Munich at this stage, as the municipal authorities prefer a comprehensive rebuild of the Olympic stadium.

September 1997: The FC Bayern executive committee votes to build a new stadium for its team. Some 500 million German marks are to be invested. However, the city sticks to the idea of reconstructing the Olympic stadium.

January 2001: FC Bayern and TSV 1860 form a coalition to construct a new stadium. A capacity of 66,000 and state of the art architecture are to attract spectators to the stadium. But the city of Munich has to find a suitable location first.

July 2001: Riem, Freiham, Fröttmaning, the Olympic Park or the university premises? These five locations are considered. Fröttmaning is chosen. But the citizens of Munich have the last word in a referendum.

21 October 2001: “A new stadium in Fröttmaning – yes or no?” An overwhelming majority of the citizens vote for the construction of the stadium. Nothing now stands in the way of a modern football arena!

December 2001: FC Bayern and TSV 1860 each take a 50 percent stake in stadium construction and operating company, München Stadion GmbH.

8 February 2002: The architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron are awarded the contract for the construction of the arena. Models submitted by eight planning consortia make the shortlist. After a long debate the Swiss architects win with their vision of an illuminated stadium façade. Another decision is made: Allianz AG acquire the naming rights (at first until 30 June 2021), the new Bayern home will be called Allianz Arena.

21 October 2002: Foundation stone ceremony. In the presence of Federal Interior Minister Otto Schily, Bavarian Minister President Dr Edmund Stoiber and Lord Mayor Christian Ude the foundation stone is lowered from the heavens to the Fröttmaning site.

13 February 2003: The final bureaucratic hurdle is passed as planning permission for the Allianz Arena is granted.

26 March 2004: The basic shell of the stadium is completed on schedule. The final 4.5 cubic meters of concrete are ceremonially poured into the last area in the stadium to be concreted.

26 May 2004: The first of 2,760 air-filled panels is mounted on the South Stand. About a year later, on 8 March 2005, the last foil panel is installed.

5 July 2004: The structural work on the esplanade and the car park underneath is finished. In approximately 14 months the biggest underground car park in Europe (about 10,000 parking spaces) has been constructed.

21 October 2014: The façade is illuminated for the first time! During the first lighting test 120 of the final total of 1056 cushions are illuminated in blue, white and red on a rotating basis.

16 April 2005: In just two days, 8,000 square metres of rolled turf is laid on the 72 by 111 m pitch at the Allianz Arena.

18 April 2005: The two words of the Allianz Arena logo are mounted on the stadium façade. Each of the illuminated letters, up to four metres high, weighs 250 to 500 kilograms.

30 April 2005: The lead construction company officially hands over the completed Allianz Arena to new owners München Stadion GmbH. Four days later the connecting roads and the new Fröttmaning underground station are officially opened.

19 May 2005: In a pre-opening match, a derby encounter between the veterans' teams of FC Bayern and TSV 1860, the Allianz Arena passes the final test before the official opening. The stadium is fully booked for the first time too: 30,000 spectators are admitted, witnessing a 3-2 victory for the Lions, one of whom is the first scorer in the Allianz Arena: Peter Pacult. Wiggerl Kögl, deputy chairman to Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, scores the first Bayern goal, commenting afterwards: “When you're on the pitch you feel exalted.”

30 & 31 May 2005: The first part of the official opening: a clash between 1860 München and FC Nürnberg. It's the Reds' turn on Sunday: Franz Beckenbauer takes the symbolic kick-off, Seal and Sarah Connor perform. The 4-2 Bayern victory over the Germany squad is the sporting highlight. Sebastian Deisler is the first pro to score in the new stadium. “I'm looking forward to each and every game in the stadium,” says Franz Beckenbauer. “We did outstandingly well, it's a world-class stadium!”

16 January 2006: The application to raise the stadium capacity by 3,901 is approved by the Munich city authorities.

27 April 2006: FC Bayern purchase TSV 1860’s 50 percent share in the Allianz Arena for €11 million. The Lions are able to buy back their share by repaying the money with interest in four years at the latest.

25 April 2008: 1860's right to repurchase the 50 percent share in the Allianz Arena, originally valid until 2010, is legally terminated. FC Bayern München AG is sole shareholder of the Allianz Arena with immediate effect, the Lions stay tenants until 2025 as stipulated in the agreement of transfer.

29 August 2012: The stadium capacity is raised to 71,137 for domestic matches through the installation of additional seats, predominantly in the last row of the upper tier. For international matches the capacity is now 67,812.

11 February 2014: Allianz SE become shareholders of FC Bayern München AG, securing the naming rights for the Arena until 2041.

November 2014: The Allianz Arena is “completely paid off,” announces Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. The original financial plan was designed for 25 years, “now we've already paid off the stadium after only nine and a half years.”

13 January 2015: The city of Munich planning authorities permit another capacity increase. From now on a crowd of 75,000 can attend Bundesliga home matches in the Allianz Arena while 70,000 are permitted for Champions League games.