Rugby-French federation drops plans for new stadium

Bernard Laporte. Bath Rugby v RC Toulon - European Rugby Champions Cup Pool Five - Recreation Ground - 15/16 - 23/1/16. Mandatory Credit: Action Images / Peter Cziborra

PARIS (Reuters) - The French rugby federation (FFR) has abandoned plans for a new stadium that was scheduled to open in 2023, president Bernard Laporte said on Wednesday.

“The board of directors has validated the final shut-down of the Grand Stade project,” Laporte, who was elected on Dec. 3, told reporters.

The stadium, which would have been built in Ris-Orangis, some 35 km from central Paris, had an estimated cost of 581 million euros (487.23 million pound).

France will continue to play most of their home games at the Stade de France, which was inaugurated in 1998 with a friendly soccer game against Spain.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ken Ferris