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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 12 March, 2003, 18:42 GMT
City's 10,000-seater stadium plan
Artist's impression of arena
The arena will host concerts and shows
Bristol could have a new 10,000-seater multi-purpose entertainment arena by 2008 if plans unveiled on Wednesday are approved.

The arena - similar in size to the Birmingham's National Indoor Arena - would host concerts, major shows, sports, exhibitions and conferences.

Land at the Temple Meads diesel depot had been set aside as it was close to the city centre and had good rail, transport and pedestrian links, a spokesman said.

A new car and pedestrian bridge over the river Avon from Cattle Market Road is planned, together with direct pedestrian links to the station.

Bristol City Council will make available some adjacent land in their ownership to ensure full access to the arena for vehicles and pedestrians.

Land acquisition

A joint venture has been agreed by the city council and the South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA) to deliver the arena by 2008 to coincide with the city's bid to be European City of Culture.

The SWRDA - which has already purchased the relevant land - will contribute more than 9m for land acquisition and infrastructure in addition to the 4m earmarked by Bristol City Council.

Ian Thompson, of SWRDA said: "The South West RDA and Bristol City Council are committed to bringing a world class arena to Bristol.

"Early investment by the agency and the council means that we can provide a site with all the necessary planning and transport approvals and attract a private developer to build and run the arena."

Diane Bunyan, council leader said: "An arena hosting major entertainment, sports and cultural events will enhance Bristol's reputation as a leading UK and European City and forms a significant part of Bristol's City of Culture bid."

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