YORK’S new Community Stadium won’t be ready for football and rugby until 2018, and will cost an extra £7.2 million.

Council papers released today show the project’s position now, but councillors in charge are pledging their ongoing commitment to it.

The new opening date marks the latest in a series of delays. It had earlier been intended that the stadium would be complete this summer.

Cllr Nigel Ayre, executive member for culture, leisure and tourism at City of York, said: “These proposals reinforce our commitment to delivering a community stadium and leisure facility by winter 2017.

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"The community hub is the first of its kind in the city and will provide bespoke facilities for longstanding partners who, alongside York City Knights RLFC and York City Football Club, have worked with us throughout this process to ensure we build the best leisure, sport and health offer for the city.”

Officers working on the project say match day agreements and leases are now in place with both the rugby club and football club.

Other final contracts will be signed once council approval is given for this latest report, they added.

The new schedule says building will start some time this summer, and is due to finish by winter 2017 with the stadium and leisure complex operational by early 2018, and both football and rugby clubs playing in it for their 2018/19 seasons.

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The new Community Stadium timetable, according to a report going to City of York Council's Executive next week - available in full here.

Cllr Ayre said he hoped seeing building work starting on the Monks Cross site this summer would make people more confident that the stadium will be completed.

Cllr Chris Steward, council leader, added: “We have made clear we are fully committed to delivering the community stadium and leisure facility project.

“In 2015 significant budget overruns emerged and officers have worked hard to address these.

“Through these proposals we anticipate the site will be completed by winter 2017, which will provide a wide-range of significant benefits for the city, including for the city’s football and rugby league teams.”

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Costs have soared at the project by £7.2 million – bringing the total up to £44.2 million – because of more detailed design work, “construction inflation”, delays in the timetable, and more contingency funds, the council papers show.

The extra cash is coming mainly from another £5.4 million in borrowing – which will cost £400,000 a year to service – as well as £1 million from the council’s Venture Fund.

Football club chairman Jason McGill said that the stadium going ahead as planned is a positive move, but he admitted the delays will have an impact on York City.

He said: "We were concerned there could be even more delays if the project had fallen apart, or not been recommended to go ahead in its current form, so this is positive.

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"On the flip side, it looks like we won't be playing in the new facilities until 2018/19, which is a blow after we were told it was going to be open in April 2017."

With the further delay the football club will miss out on income from the new stadium over the next two years, he said.

"The football club losses money year on year, and at the moment we have nothing in place beyond June. After the meetings in March I will have to assess my position and make a decision."

At the Knights, chief executive John Guildford said the rugby club would have questions about where they would play until the new stadium is ready - as the current Bootham Crescent licence for rugby league only lasts for this season.

The report will be brought to an executive meeting next Thursday, March 17 and then to Full Council on March 24, asking for approval to finalise and sign the contracts.

The new stadium complex will include an 8,000 all-seat stadium for both football and rugby league games, a 25m swimming pool, teaching pool, leisure fun pool, competition standard sports hall, extreme Clip ‘n’ Climb play centre, outdoor high ropes climbing facility and 3G astro turf sports pitches.

The commercial side includes 13 screen cinema, five restaurants, three retail units and the city’s first digital IMAX screen. The commercial space has stayed the same size but changed from three restaurants and five shops to five restaurants and three shops led by "market demand", the project managers said.

The community hub will give a home to a new Explore Library and café, and NHS facilities with two "public facing" health services. York Against Cancer will also have a prominent presence to help the charity to expand and support additional worthwhile projects regionally.

The project also covers the operation and maintenance of Energise Leisure Centre and Yearsley Swimming Pool but another report on the long-term operation of the pool will come out later in the year.