Mat Fernandez has ferreted out details of a number of minor, but significant, work projects set to be delivered at the Circuit de la Sarthe between this year and 2023, this in addition to the major programme to completely rebuild and extend the current pits complex and grandstand in time for the centenary race at Le Mans in 2023.
Wollek Grandstand/ Tribune
The current open and very dated 600 seat tribune pictured top and mapped in the graphic below borrowed from our friends at Travel Destinations, is set to be demolished and replaced by an entirely new 1.8 million Euro structure in time for the 2023 race.
Project work starts this year with the work set to be completed by 2023.
North Tunnel Extension
In addition to the pedestrian bridge now installed over the access tunnel from the main entrance to mitigate conflict with vehicle traffic – Details here – there is a further project to extend the tunnel by 50 metres on the inside of the circuit.
That’s an area with heavy pedestrian flows during race meetings where significant staffing has been required to ensure safety, and where significant disruption to incoming and outgoing traffic flow can occur.
No specific details of the work are available but the intention is for pedestrian and vehicle traffic to be entirely separated. The 0.8-1.1 Million Euro project is intended to start this year with work to be undertaken in 2021.
New South Entrance Building
A 1 Million Euro project to create a 155m2 South Entrance building – where there are currently only very rudimentary star facilities, together with a 4000m2 parking and welcome area at the South Entrance is set to be completed by 2022.
Renovation of Washrooms
A very welcome addition to the planned works is a two-phase programme of wholesale renovations for the circuits washrooms. The 5-700.000 Euro programme will see some facilities upgrade by 2021 with a further tranche completed by 2023.
Mulsanne Corner Works
We’ve already shared details of the planned work at Mulsanne Corner – no change to the track itself planned but an extension to the gravel traps with an associated upgrade to safety fencing with the fence line moving back too to varying degrees – almost no change at the end of the gravel trap, more significant change at the point closes to the riskiest area with the difference decreasing thereafter.
That work is still apparently planned to take place imminently and to be completed in time for this year’s race.
Not part of any current works project, but rather something still in the feasibility study stage, Mat has discovered a proposal for a pedestrian bridge to go over the RD140 near Indianapolis corner.
At present, the available detail makes it hard to say whether the bridge would go over the track or not (the D140 has a short new segment going towards the roundabout which is not the track as such).
The bridge though is proposed to be 2.5m wide x 30m long.
There is currently no timing applied to the potential project, no any information as to whether it might be built to offer a view for the public or something similar to the Dunlop bridge where no viewing is possible.