UK’s Bristol Arena project put on hold after calls for fresh review

13 November 2017 (Last Updated November 13th, 2017 10:45)

Pre-construction work of the UK’s Bristol Arena has been suspended after calls for a fresh and comprehensive review of the project.

UK’s Bristol Arena project put on hold after calls for fresh review
An artist’s impression of the Bristol Arena. Credit: © 2017 Bristol City Council.

Pre-construction work of the UK’s Bristol Arena has been suspended after calls for a fresh and comprehensive review of the project.

The development follows completion of professional services by Buckingham Group Contracting under a pre-construction services agreement.

Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees has commissioned a new review, which will assess location, design, and the possibility of private financing. The results are scheduled to be submitted next month.

Bristol City Council is expected to meet in January next year to evaluate the review and devise a development plan.

Marvin Rees said: “Buckingham has done a good job and we now need to see what the wider review of the project says.

“Bristol City Council is expected to meet in January next year to evaluate the review and devise a development plan.”

“I remain 100% committed to delivering an arena for Bristol and with this in mind it is right to look at every available option, along with the benefits and drawbacks of each.

“We can’t commit to the current design on this specific site at any cost and I wouldn’t want that kind of blinkered approach to become the arena’s undoing.”

The council previously projected a budget of £123.5m for the development of the arena, which is now estimated to rise significantly.

Marvin Rees added: “What we’re seeing with the cost is a challenge and we need to deal with it.

“I’ve asked our consultants KPMG to consider every avenue. This includes raising private investment, thinking about other sites, and considering designs that could be delivered within budget.”

The target date to open the arena is 2020, which may be delayed following the recommendations of the new review.