The Bristol Arena moves another step closer as residents and businesses are invited to give their views on the emerging plans and transport proposals for the 12,000 capacity international entertainment venue due to be located close to Temple Meads station. International arena design team Populous together with Bath-based architects Feilden Clegg Bradley and engineering firm BuroHappold have developed plans for an innovative and flexible arena that will bring world-class acts, regeneration and recognition to the city.
The plans are being developed for two planning applications, one for the arena when it opens and one for the future development of Arena Island, both due to be submitted at the end of October. They show the Bristol Arena set in a vibrant place that will in time become a new destination, active throughout the week, transforming a derelict part of the city into a new vibrant quarter.
The city regularly hosts events with very large visitor numbers, often far larger than the arena’s maximum capacity of 12,000, and it has the capacity to absorb these visitors even if a majority still come in cars. The Arcadia event in Queen Square a couple of weekends ago was an excellent test with an audience of over 12,000 causing minimal disruption and resulting in no parking or congestion complaints that I heard of.
The consultation will run from 16th September to 13 October. There will be several drop-in sessions when visitors can discuss the plans with members of the project team:
Wednesday 23rd September and Thursday 1 October, 6pm to 7.30pm at the Citizen Service Point, 100 Temple Street, BS1 6AG
Saturday 26th October, 9am to 6pm at the Galleries, Broadmead, Bristol
The exhibition will also be on display in the Citizen Service Point at 100 Temple St for the duration of the consultation and in the main foyer of the Central Library from 28 September until 13 October and on-line www.bristoltemplequarter.com/
Bristol City Council is investing over £90 million to build the arena, with around £38 million being funded by operator rental and other related income once the arena is built, and £53 million funded via the City Deal Economic Development Fund, managed by the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership.
The council acquired Arena Island from the Homes and Communities Agency in March earlier this year. A report is due to be brought to Cabinet in October outlining the funding required for additional infrastructure projects to support the arena building and development on the rest of Arena Island site. Ultimately it is expected that the Arena Island development will be cost neutral when complete using development profit to fund additional infrastructure projects.