With their place in this month’s BBL Trophy Final recently confirmed, the Caledonia Gladiators have subsequently announced the club are to invest over £20million in a new stadium project, marking the single greatest contribution to the sport in Scottish history.
Gladiators owners Steve and Alison Timoney made the announcement ahead of the men’s team’s first BBL Trophy Final appearance in nine years, when they will face off against the defending champions, the Cheshire Phoenix, on Sunday 26 March at Glasgow’s Emirates Arena in front of what is expected to be a sell-out crowd of over 6,000 people.
The two-stage stadium development will see the Gladiators initially move into an 1,800-seater temporary stadium, based at PlaySport Scotland Leisure Complex in East Kilbride, later this summer before work begins in 2024 on the main project, developing a new state-of-the-art 6,000-seater arena and five-court practice and community facility at the site, which is due to be completed in 2026.
Caledonia Gladiators owner Steve Timoney said:
“This is a hugely exciting moment for the future of the Caledonia Gladiators. Our new base at PlaySport will go on to become one of the finest basketball facilities in Europe once it is completed in 2026.
“It includes plans for a class-leading academy, which will train youngsters from Scotland and across the world with the aim of developing them into elite players. We believe our new facility has the potential to help Caledonia Gladiators become one of the most successful men and women’s teams in the BBL and WBBL, with ambitions to play at the top level in Europe.
“It’s a great time for the club, with our BBL Trophy Final match round the corner, and we’re all hugely looking forward to that match.”
Gareth Murray, Caledonia Gladiators Head Coach, added:
“We’re really proud to be announcing our new plans for the club. Given the current pressures of working between The Emirates Arena for the men’s team, and The Lagoon in Paisley for the women’s team, it was vital we found a permanent home, so this is a really positive step forward.
“It’s such an exciting time for everyone involved with the Caledonia Gladiators, and I know our team are all looking forward to playing in the new arena. All our focus now is on winning the BBL Trophy later this month, which would be a huge moment for the supporters and everyone at the club.”
Caledonia Gladiators secured their place in the BBL Trophy Final after defeating Derby Trailblazers 83-65 earlier this month in the semi-final, and will be looking to win their first major title in British basketball for 20 years on March 26th.