Sport-Dublin opens new Aviva stadium after three years

DUBLIN Fri May 14, 2010 6:52pm BST

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DUBLIN May 14 (Reuters) - Dublin officially opened its new 50,000-capacity Aviva Stadium on Friday, home to Ireland's international rugby and soccer teams.

The government provided 191 million euros ($242.6 million) for the project which had an overall cost of around 410 million euros. More than 6,000 people were employed over the three-year construction period.

John Callaghan, president of the Irish Rugby Football Union, said: "The unveiling of this magnificent new facility marks the dawning of an exciting new era on the Irish sporting landscape."

Seen from across the city, the stadium is on four levels on three sides and sweeps down to one level at the northern end.

The first fixtures will see a Connacht/Munster rugby selection take on a combined Leinster/Ulster side on July 31. An Irish soccer league team will also play Manchester United on Aug. 4.

The venue replaces the old Lansdowne Road stadium.

(Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian, editing by Tony Jimenez. To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)

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