Latest plans for Manchester’s new arena spark backlash from councillors

  • Councillors from the Ancoats and Beswick area disapprove of late opening times
  • The new arena is set to have a capacity of 23,500
  • The arena will be home to both national and international events

The Co-op Live arena is set to open in 2024, but councillors are concerned over some of the proposals for the site.

Irene Robinson, a Labour councillour from the Ancoats and Beswick ward, has in particular raised some concerns over issues of public nuisance and safety.

This comes after the venue has announced a ‘Co-op Live Events’ and ‘Non-Co-op Live Events’ system, meaning that other events will be able to operate under ‘unrestricted hours’.

The arena will house international events such as the popular broadcasted boxing events which will have a late start for an American audience.

The arena will consist of five internal multi-use levels and an external podium. / Photo credit: Coop Live

Councillour Irene Robinson said: “I believe that having people leave the arena at all hours of the night will impact residents in Beswick and Ancoats.

“We already know that they deal with flow of people and issues around litter from matches and these are during day times. Night time when people are sleeping is unacceptable.”

The arena is situated in the Etihad Campus, meaning that there will be an increase of people around the campus with more events.

She added: “Who will be in charge of cleaning the area after people leave? We have city cleaning up after matches but there is no provision for this offered on this license.”

Public safety for public transport users

The arena says it will offer sustainable travel: “This includes investment in improved campus wide cycle facilities, with over 240 extra covered bicycle spaces across the campus. The use of public transport will be encouraged at the point of booking tickets.”

On the public transport system from the venue, Councillor Robinson said: “There is not public transport infrastructure in place to transport people from the arena to other parts of Manchester.

“There is a danger that people could have to walk alone, pack on transport to unsafe levels or walk down the canal path and risk falling in.”

In her interview with the Manchester Evening News, Councillor Robinson has said: ““We’ll be meeting in the coming weeks to get a resolution which will benefit residents and keep in [mind] the nature of the relationship with community and councillors. I’m committed to making sure what is next works for our residents.”

Co-op live is set to open in April 2024.