Lisbon opens its arms to ‘bizarre’ Champions League finale

first_imgYet that has not stopped some fans from making the trip to the banks of the River Tagus to take in the atmosphere.”This is the most important match of our season,” Andrea, a 27-year-old Atalanta fan from Bergamo who has come for his team’s quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain, tells AFP.He is in Lisbon with two friends. With spectators barred, they plan to watch the match in a bar near the stadium. “The atmosphere is bizarre. The city seems empty and the bars close early,” he said.  ‘No exception’ to restrictionsDaniel Sa of IPAM told AFP that more than 5,000 people could gather in the city for the final, which is scheduled for August 23 at Benfica’s Estadio da Luz, where the players’ voices will echo around the empty 65,000-capacity venue.However, Sa described that as a “conservative” estimate and believes the final figure will be higher thanks to the “improvement of the health situation in Lisbon in recent weeks or the increase in the number of flights to Lisbon”.On the basis of regular briefings with police in the clubs’ home countries, Portuguese authorities are not expecting any organized trips by groups of supporters.Yet Lisbon police still plan to deploy as many officers on game days as they would if supporters were attending.Portugal, with its population of just over 10 million, successfully hosted the 2004 European Championship.The Estadio da Luz was the venue for the 2014 Champions League final between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid while large numbers of foreign fans attended the UEFA Nations League finals in Porto and Guimaraes in the north of the country last year.However, restrictions are currently in place around the country as part of efforts to stop the spread of coronavirus.Those restrictions are especially strict in and around Lisbon, where cases of COVID-19 have been most prevalent since Portugal came out of lockdown in May.That includes a ban on gatherings of more than 10 people, compared to 20 people in the rest of the country.Alcohol consumption in public is banned, while shops and cafes must close at 8:00 pm, the time Champions League ‘Final Eight’ matches will kick off.”The sporting context will not allow for an exception to the rules in place,” warned Pereira, of the Lisbon police force, on Tuesday. Topics : Meanwhile, 16-year-old Paris Saint-Germain supporter Mathieu finds himself in Lisbon “by chance”, on holiday with his parents.”I don’t see any Champions League atmosphere,” he says, wearing a PSG replica shirt, “but people have chanted ‘Come on Paris’ at me in the street. I think there are supporters here.”Portuguese police have not given an estimation of the number of foreign fans who could come to the capital but officers will make themselves “highly visible” on the streets, according to the Lisbon region police chief, Paulo Pereira.A study conducted by the Portuguese Institute of Marketing Administration has estimated that a total of 16,000 fans could come to the city even though none are allowed into games.That is despite British tourists being advised not to travel to Portugal this holiday season. Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City are the one English representative involved in the ‘Final Eight’. Football supporters would usually flock in huge numbers to the city hosting the finale of the Champions League, but this time it is set to be a different experience for fans who have decided to come to Lisbon for the ‘Final Eight’ despite the coronavirus pandemic.For the first time, as an exceptional measure because of the health crisis, all matches from the quarter-finals onwards of the world’s richest and most glamorous club competition are being played as one-off ties in the same city.They are all taking place behind closed doors and with strict health guidelines in place as Europe faces a steady rise in cases of COVID-19.last_img read more

Governor Wolf Announces Funding to Clean Up and Renew Former Industrial Sites

first_imgGovernor Wolf Announces Funding to Clean Up and Renew Former Industrial Sites Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced seven new projects funded by the Industrial Sites Reuse Program (ISRP) that will clean up former industrial sites in Allegheny, Berks, Bucks, Dauphin, Lehigh, and York counties to prepare them for use as parks, and business and residential properties.“Refurbishing an old property for the benefit of the community is a vital step in attracting business investment and job creation,” said Gov. Wolf. “These projects will provide a clean and safe environment for communities and businesses to use for years to come.”ISRP provides loans and grants for environmental assessments and remediation carried out by eligible applicants who did not cause or contribute to the contamination. The program is designed to foster the cleanup of environmental contamination at industrial sites, thereby bringing blighted land into productive reuse.The seven approved projects are:Allegheny County: The Regional Industrial Development Corporation of Southwestern Pennsylvania (RIDC) was granted $637,500 for environmental remediation of the former Roundhouse and Guard Shack building. The Roadhouse building is a 23,000-square-foot building located at the Industrial Center of McKeesport, a former steel site. Funds will be used to include remediation or encapsulation of asbestos-containing material throughout the structure, as well as lead-based paint remediation throughout the interior walls.The Regional Industrial Development Corporation of Southwestern Pennsylvania (RIDC) was also granted $33,700 for environmental remediation of the former Open Hearth building, a 3,200-square-foot building located at the City Center of Duquesne, a former steel site. Funds will be used to remediate lead-based paint and encapsulate surfaces where lead-based paint was removed. RIDC plans to redevelop the site into a planned urban industrial park.Berks County: The Borough of Robesonia was granted $279,533 to perform environmental remediation at the former Robesonia Furnace property. The ISRP funds will be used to remediate the property of contaminates to create a compost transfer and passive recreation areas.Bucks County: The Redevelopment Authority of the County of Bucks was granted $426,675 for site remediation at the former Sellersville Landfill Site in Sellersville. ISRP funds will be used for soil excavation, soil sampling and analysis, surface water sampling and analysis, groundwater monitoring, and well abandonment. Once remediated, the RDA plans to reuse the site for residential purposes.Dauphin County: Steelton Economic Development Corporation was granted $43,337 for an environmental assessment of the 6.25-acre Steelton Steel Works plant. ISRP funds will be used for soil characterization, monitoring well installation, groundwater characterization sampling, and a receptor survey/pathway exposure evaluation. The Steel Works Redevelopment project is a strategic public/private partnership between the Steelton Economic Development Corporation and Integrated Development Partners, LLC. Together they plan to redevelop the site with 65,000 square feet of commercial, retail, and office space, and multi-level senior housing units. Once completed, the partnership anticipates creating 100 full-time jobs.Lehigh County: Catasauqua was granted $1,000,000 for environmental remediation of the former Crane Iron Works, a 120,000-square-foot building located in Catasauqua. The ISRP funds will be used for remediation of asbestos-containing material throughout the structures, removal, and disposal of all debris within the buildings and capping the site with imported certified clean fill. Once remediated, the proposed plan will create a mixed-use development.York County: The York County Industrial Development Authority (YCIDA) was granted $1,000,000 for the environmental remediation of the former Yorktowne Hotel Building, an 11-story, Renaissance Revival styled hotel built in the 1920s. ISRP funds will be used for site remediation to include removal of asbestos-containing materials, contamination debris, demolition debris, and removal of debris and other hazardous materials. Once remediated, most of the space will remain as a hotel, to also include some retail shops, restaurants, apartments, and office space.For more information about the Industrial Site Reuse Program or DCED, visit the DCED website, and be sure to stay up-to-date with all of our agency news on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img October 23, 2019last_img read more