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On Tuesday the Espai Barça Director of Operations, Alex Barbany, gave an interview on Barça TV to talk about several topics related to the project. Barbany explained: "We are excited and at the same time aware of our responsibility to move ahead with a project that will be transformative and a real foundation for the Club for decades to come. We are working hard to bring it about as soon as possible, within the budget set out, and that it becomes a real source of pride and for fun and entertainment for all the members and fans."
The Director went through the current state of the project, focusing on the challenges of financing, construction and operations: "The construction work and financing are the elements that have generated most media interest up to now. That is normal because without financing there is no project, whilst the construction work is the most visible part for everyone. However, neither of them are the final objectives of the project by themselves." Barbany continued: "The main objective is to modernise our facilities to create new spaces, environments and assets that generate additional income. That will allow us to remain competitive and at the same time preserve the history and legacy of the Club."
Barbany's professional career, as he explains himself, "has developed in the large commercial and entertainment centre sector, both as a consultant and as a promotor and investor, and which have many, many similarities and synergies with a project like that of the Espai Barça."
In addition, he explained that the project has been carried out "without the Club owners having to put in money, without committing financial resources destined for sporting matters but based on increments in income that will be generated." Barbany also highlighted that "we are working with emerging businesses in the industry that are coming in to complement the Club's own teams."
With regards to the role of the stadium, he added: "We are travelling and working to find out the best way to maximise making use of the stadium, which has to go from having a passive role during games to being much more active, with a proposal that digitises and adds value before, during and after the game via technological partners who will become involved in the project to make the stadium a Smart Venue."
Finally, he also explained that "when the work starts on the stadium, the Museum will be forced to close and so work has already started to convert the Ice Rink to be able to protect as much as possible the Club's income during that period."
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