A major expansion and part-refurbishment of Resorts World Arena in Solihull, near Birmingham in the UK has been given the go-ahead.
Solihull Borough Council’s planning committee unanimously backed the plans.
Work to expand and improve the arena will not now be completed prior to the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022, however, because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Guy Dunstan, NEC Group Arenas managing director said:
This is great news, as now more than ever we need to look at the longevity of our business.
We are excited we’ll be able to still host most of the events we’ve missed over the last few months and cannot wait to play our part in what will be an historic Commonwealth Games in 2022.
To accommodate the revised event dates and negate any potential delay to the Games, we have reviewed the project timelines and made the decision to reschedule the works until after the Games have finished.
The plans will allow for an increase in capacity to 21,600, making the venue the largest arena in the UK and Ireland.
There will be improvements to the existing service offering within the arena, and an enhanced visitor experience through internal and external upgrades.
The alterations will enable Resorts World Arena to accommodate a wider range of events and larger audiences, further establishing the NEC as one of the UK’s top exhibition and entertainment venues.
The proposals will enable the roof to be replaced, strengthened and raised to address its currently restricted height and weight bearing capacity and to increase the maximum visitor seating capacity.
By extending the capacity of Resorts World Arena to 21,600, it would be elevated to the largest indoor venue in the UK and Ireland market in terms of capacity and gross earning potential.
This will ensure that major artists and the largest world class productions continue to come to the West Midlands, thus protecting the significant contribution that the arena provides to the local and regional economy.