Plans for 4,000 seater venue in Bristol 'Sporting Quarter' submitted

What the new, indoor arena might look like. Credit: Bristol Sport

Plans for a state-of-the-art indoor sports arena in south Bristol have been submitted as part of a major development at Ashton Gate.

Work could start on the new ‘Sporting Quarter’ as early as next year if permission is granted by Bristol City Council planners.

The development was first unveiled in 2018 but now a formal application has been submitted following feedback from residents.

As well as a 4,000-seater sport and convention centre, which will house the Bristol Flyers basketball team, the plans include a multi-storey car park, hotel, gym, residential buildings and offices.

The plans include a new sport arena and hotel (pictured). Credit: Bristol Sport

The project is linked to plans for around 500 new homes Bristol Sport owner Steve Lansdown is also seeking permission for.

He wants to build the homes on a greenfield site - named Longmoor Village - between Ashton Vale and the David Lloyd Sports Centre on the edge of Bristol.

It is the same location Lansdown had proposed to build a new stadium before it was rejected in 2011.

‘A long road’

Ashton Gate chairman Martin Griffiths said the plans have changed and “improved significantly” following feedback from residents.

“We first unveiled these proposals in September 2018, and it has been a long road to get to this point,” he said.

An artist's impression of the new-look Sporting Quarter. Credit: Bristol Sport

“We wanted to make sure we had the best possible plans in place to deliver this next exciting phase of Ashton Gate’s development.

“Last autumn, and despite the difficulties presented by Covid, we launched another round of consultation over our proposals, along with the associated Longmoor housing development, we also held events with neighbours in February. 

“We would like to thank everyone who provided feedback and comments.”

The changes to the plans have seen the blocks of flats scaled back, and lowered by five storeys, one of the hotels removed and the entire site less densely developed.

In pictures:

An artist's impression of Longmoor Village. Credit: Bristol Sport
The site in Ashton Vale. Credit: Bristol Sport

“Based on the feedback received, we have made significant improvements to the Sporting Quarter scheme,” Mr Griffiths continued.

“The tallest building has now been reduced by five storeys; community facilities have been increased with sports, fitness and well-being facilities added on the roof of the Sports and Convention Centre, plus the northern entrance, near Ashton Road, has been totally pedestrianised for non-matchdays.

“The linked proposals of the Sporting Quarter and Longmoor developments offer significant regeneration benefits.”

Ashton Gate Stadium has applied for the Longmoor Village application at the same time, and Mr Griffiths has pledged part of the land will not be built on.

“It means that the Longmoor development will capture a biodiversity net gain with increased protection for habitats and fauna as well as improved connections for pedestrians and cyclists,” he added.

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