Aberdeen City Council in Scotland has approved Henry Boot's proposal for the new Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre (AECC), which would be built at the existing site of the Rowett Research Institute.
Following approvals for the centre's master plan and business case, Henry Boot plans to submit detailed plans targeting a planning permission by the end of 2015 to develop the initial phase of the project, which is expected to involve around £300m.
The first phase will have the 750,000ft² exhibition and conference centre, two hotels and an anaerobic digestion green energy centre.
Together with Aberdeen City Council, Henry Boot Developments will act as development partner to deliver the project.
Construction work on the project is expected to commence by mid-2016 and is due to complete late-2018.
A further 400,000ft² of business park accommodation will be created as part of the plan, in addition to redevelopment of the existing conference centre site.
The centre will be able to host events including entertainment, exhibitions and sporting events, with an all-seated capacity of 10,000 and an all-standing capacity of 15,000.
Two proposed on-site hotels are expected to provide a minimum of 350 rooms, which will add an almost 50% increase in hotel rooms planned over the coming years.
AECC managing director Brian Horsburgh said: "A modern, purpose-built venue with increased capacity for business events will help to anchor key energy-related events such as Offshore Europe, in Aberdeen; whilst the larger 10,000 seat Arena will ensure Aberdeen attracts many more major artists to bring their tours to the city."
Image: Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre. Photo: courtesy of Graham Scott.