Flagship arena at centre of Leeds plans for MIPIM 2009Proposals for the new £80 million concert and events arena form the centrepiece for the Location Leeds presence at MIPIM 2009. The Leeds arena is being developed by Leeds City Council and will be run by a leading international operator SMG Europe.
A city centre location was recently chosen for the flagship arena, which will be a major draw for the city and will help raise the profile of Leeds within the UK and Europe. SMG Europe is closely involved in the design and specification of the arena and plans for the next stage in the development process will be announced at a keynote event during the week at MIPIM.
Leeds returns to the premier international property and investment trade show, with a firm commitment to place making and quality of design as its core message to the market. “Place making rather than development for development’s sake, quality rather than quantity, is the key to long-term sustainable development, said Jean Dent, Leeds City Council’s director city development.
“The arena and its proposed city centre location places it at the forefront of our vision for the future development of the city centre as a major driver for the regional economy and the position of Leeds as an internationally competitive European city. We welcome expressions of interest from construction companies that would like to work with us on this and other projects."
The Location Leeds partnership, which is supported by many of the city’s major private property organisations, is focusing efforts on the exhibition stand this year.
Richard Lewis, group property director at Town Centre Securities and a sponsor of Location Leeds, said: “The Location Leeds partnership has established a reputation for its networking and business development events, which in previous years have led to major new contracts for Leeds-based firms including some multi-million pound international instructions.
“However, the partnership felt that in the current economic climate, a more streamlined approach was necessary and that the best impact in 2009 would be achieved through the Location Leeds exhibition stand. It is vital that the city continues to fly the flag at MIPIM and maintain its profile in a fiercely competitive international investment market."
A new book on the architecture of Leeds will also be launched during the week. Shaping the City, published by the Royal Institute of British Architects, is sponsored by a number of Location Leeds partners including MEPC, Carey Jones, Evans Property Group and Hammerson.
The book tells the story of the rebirth of Leeds as a major urban centre and how contemporary architecture has been woven into the fabric of traditional buildings to create the city’s unique sense of place. It includes contributions by civic architect John Thorp, who has masterminded the development of the Renaissance Framework for Leeds. This is the unique approach to place making and urban design, which is shaping regeneration and development activity in Leeds and was profiled to considerable acclaim at MIPIM 2008.
Other key focuses for the city in 2009 include plans to showcase major regeneration programmes such as Holbeck Urban Village, a fast developing business and residential quarter close to the city centre, and the Aire Valley Leeds, where 250 hectares of development land will be opened up with the completion of the £32 million East Leeds Link Road.