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Manchester approves UK’s largest indoor arena next to Etihad Stadium

Words: Huw Morris
Etihad Stadium

A proposal for the UK’s biggest indoor arena next to Manchester City FC’s home has been granted planning permission.

Manchester City Council approved the plans by the Oak View Group for the £350 million music and indoor sports arena next to the Etihad Stadium. The venue, which will have a capacity of 23,500, could attract up to £1.5 billion in the city’s economy over the next 20 years. The scheme had been fiercely opposed by Manchester Arena, which said the approval has put its expansion plans “in jeopardy”.

However, the Oak View Group argued Manchester could accommodate more than one arena, citing the examples of Birmingham and London. Independent analysis commissioned by the council also suggested the city could sustain two arenas.

The group said the new arena will be “a best-in-class sustainable venue”, with renewable energy, energy efficiency, and low-carbon technologies integral to the design. It will also invest in improving walking and cycling routes, as well as funding an expanded controlled parking zone to minimise disruption for residents.