Ambitious plan unlocked to upgrade NEC arena
A multi-million pound plan has been unveiled to increase the capacity of Solihull's Resorts World Arena in England by around 6,000 in run-up to Birmingham hosting the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
The Resorts World Arena is a multipurpose indoor arena located at the National Exhibition Centre in Solihull, England. It has a capacity of 15,685 seats.
The arena is scheduled to host events in badminton, boxing, netball, table tennis and weightlifting at the Games which will run from July 27 to August 7, 2022. The arena forms part of the National Exhibition Centre and is owned by the NEC Group. NEC Group is UK's leading live events business operating in exhibitions, conferences, music, sports, family entertainment and hospitality.
Media reports stated that design practice Populous has submitted plans for the arena's expansion to Solihull Council. The expansion would make certain that the venue has a capacity of more than 21,000 for the Games, with a new roof set to be central to the plans, along with hospitality facilities, a new concourse and new entrances and exits.
Populous basically wants to remove the existing arena roof structure and replace it with a higher, larger volume roof.
A planning statement read, "The proposed expansion of Resorts World Arena seeks to ensure that all the shortcomings of the existing arena are addressed and that the venue will ultimately be capable of hosting the largest live productions and providing the highest quality user experience for the foreseeable future."
A NEC Group spokesman added, "The extension will increase the venue's seating capacity by 38 per cent to accommodate 21,600 people, with customers also benefiting from new hospitality, food, beverage and merchandise facilities."
The spokesman further said, "As part of the project, a new roof is set to increase weight load capability and height clearance of the 40-year-old venue, ensuring it continues to attract world-class entertainment for the next generation."
The new structure's roof will be approximately 10 meters taller than the one currently standing.
At present, around 750,000 people visit the arena every year, with estimates that the upgrades will attract up to another 120,000 spectators annually.
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