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Next generation: 2024’s new wave of arenas

IQ profiles a handful of the game-changing venues scheduled to launch around the globe over the next 12 months

By James Hanley on 12 Jan 2024

OVG's Manchester Co-op Live arena will open in 2023

Co-op Live, Manchester


On the heels the launch of the revolutionary $2.3 billion Las Vegas Sphere last year, the concert business is braced for a fresh wave of game-changing arenas in 2024.

A joint venture between Oak View Group (OVG) and City Football Group (CFG), Manchester’s long-awaited Co-op Live is scheduled to open in April. The 23,500-cap development will become the UK’s largest arena when it launches at Etihad Campus, the site of Manchester City FC’s Etihad Stadium.

Confirmed shows so far include Olivia Rodrigo, Take That, Liam Gallagher, The Killers, Eric Clapton, Jonas Brothers, Nicki Minaj, Noah Kahan, Pet Shop Boys, Barry Manilow, Niall Horan and Slipknot. Several of the acts will perform multi-night runs.

“The idea and the mission is to be the biggest and best arena in Europe, and secondly, to bring more global talent to Manchester – that is ultimately the focus,” general manager Gary Roden told IQ last October. “Our model is based on bringing in international and UK artists to Manchester and sit there for longer. Manchester has now got seven Take That [shows] and London’s only got six, and that’s a massive step forward for us.”

Co-op Live will go head-to-head with ASM Global’s long-established 21,000-cap AO Arena in Manchester, but Roden insisted the goal was to “grow the overall pie” for live music in the city.

“We decided on Manchester on the basis that it is the UK’s second biggest music market by a significant distance after London,” he says. “And if you’re looking to build a new facility, then London’s got two [arenas], Birmingham’s got two, etc. I also think that people up north in general just love live music, and we see that in the stats. So I think there’s definitely room for us in Manchester.”

“There’ll be a defined next generation of artists and venues coming to the marketplace that has never been seen before”

OVG is also partnering with Live Nation and GL events to build Arena São Paulo, which is projected to open this year. OVG’s Brian Kabatznick has tipped the 20,000-cap venue to be “the greatest arena in Latin America,” and prove transformative for the region.

“Routing in Latin America today skews more toward festivals and stadiums because there’s a football stadium in every market, whereas arenas are limited. But with São Paulo coming on stream, and GL Events managing the Jeunesse Arena in Rio, you’ll see that there’ll be a defined next generation of artists and venues coming to the marketplace that has never been seen before,” he said.

Also slated for completion is the 18,000-cap Intuit Dome in Inglewood, California, US, which will house NBA side the LA Clippers from the 2024-25 season.

Other developments include South Korea’s 20,000-cap CJ LiveCity Arena, which is being built as part of AEG and CJ LiveCity Corporation’s new K-pop-focused entertainment complex in Goyang City, Seoul. It will also includes an outdoor performance space capable of accommodating 40,000 people.

And Hong Kong will welcome Kai Tak Sports Park, which will feature a 50,000-capacity stadium and 10,000-capacity indoor arena, with retractable seating. Operated by ASM Global, the venue will predominantly hosting sporting events.

“ASM Global will bring world-class sports and entertainment events and deliver an outstanding experience to fans and clients alike,” said ASM’s executive director Darren Burden. “The renders of the venues provide a tantalising glimpse as to what that experience will look and feel like and we can’t wait to start delivering events.”

 


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