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Work Starts On Arena 2000

Coventry City came a step nearer achieving their dream of a new 50,000 seat arena today when work started on the site.

Arena 2000 complete with a sliding roof and retractable pitch will seat 45,000 for football and around 50,000 for concerts and other events.

The arena, which is due to open in two years time, has been given full planning consent and the club have now bought the land from BG Properties. Transco are the first contractors to start work, removing three gas holders and building a new gas pressure-reducing station.

Foleshill Gas Works

The 70-acre former gas works site in Foleshill is heavily contaminated and it will cost the club 18 million to clean it ahead of building work which will start in the winter.

Bryan Richardson, Coventry City FCClub chairman Bryan Richardson, the man behind the scheme, said work beginning on site was a landmark for the club and the city.

"This is a great day. There have been times when we did not think that work would begin but here we are. We have had great support from the council all the way through and as we have progressed people have really begun to believe it will happen. Now they all know it will.

"I have said before that it is essential we raise our revenue. At present we turn over around 20 million but that will double with the creation of the new ground.

"This will be a truly seven-day arena capable of housing world class sporting and entertainment events as well as conferences and trade shows.

"It will create thousands of jobs and do wonders for the city."

Council leader John Fletcher, a Highfield Road regular, said a successful Coventry City was essential for local people.

"This will put Coventry on the international map but also give the city itself a huge lift. It is so important for a city to have a successful football team but this means so much more in every sense."

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Staying Up by Rick Gekoski

CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 5 Aug 99

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM