Agenda item

Arena Update


The Board were provided with an update regarding the Arena development, following which Members commented on the information provided and asked for additional details in a number of areas.  The key points were as follows;


  • It was noted that the site known as Brabazon Hanger, Filton Airfield was currently designated as a Principal Industrial and Warehousing Area and confirmed that any consideration of change of use would be assessed as part of the normal planning application process. It was further noted that the council was going through a local plan review so there was an opportunity to revise current designations of sites where appropriate.
  • It was noted that a petition was in circulation asking for the Arena to stay at Temple Meads which had enough signatures to trigger a debate.
  • It was confirmed that the National Planning Policy Framework  (NPPF) referred to a sequential test which promotes a town centre first approach. The test would ask if there is an available site in the town centre and would therefore include the Diesel depot site. However, any developer would have the right to make a case for an alternative location and all aspects of the application would need to be assessed.  The NPPF goes on to say that, when considering edge of centre and out of centre proposals, preference should be given to accessible sites that are well connected to the town centre. Where an application fails to satisfy the sequential test or is likely to have significant adverse impact, it should be refused.
  • It was confirmed that a full planning application had been received and planning permission granted for an arena on the Diesel depot site.  In addition, there had been a separate planning application received for a residual piece of land at that site for a mix of uses, and which had been granted outline planning permission at the same time. An application has been received for a university campus in the same location encompassing Cattlemarket Road, with a proposal for student accommodation on the residual land at the diesel site. It was confirmed that these proposals did not infringe in any way on the arena permission that had been previously granted.
  • It was clarified that disabled parking was included as part of the full arena planning application.
  • It was confirmed that an existing planning permission on a piece of land would not prevent further planning permissions for different uses on the same site and therefore would not prevent an alternative use being built out on that site. 
  • It was expected that KPMG in their report would outline the source of their benchmarking information, to include reference sites, stakeholders that had been engaged as part of that process. it was confirmed that  the options appraisals
  • It was noted that a further meeting may need to be convened prior to the Cabinet meeting in May to engage with the executive on the new report when available as it could be fundamental to informing the decision made. 
  • It was welcomed that the terms of reference for KPMG referred to value in it’s widest sense!  Not just on a finance basis. However, a number of concerns were raised that the benefits of an edge of town arena may be more likely to bequeath benefits to residents outside of Bristol.  OSMB sought confirmation that the model that looked at value for money for the Filton site also considered where the jobs would be created and whether this would be of benefit to Bristol taxpayers. It was noted that consideration needed to ascertain the opportunity left by a vacant plot.
  • OSMB requested that board members be given sufficient time to digest the report and it was suggested that a reserve date was put in members diaries in in advance of the Cabinet meeting.

RESOLVED; that the report be noted.  A further meeting to be arranged before Cabinet and OSMB to be given sufficient time to digest the report before the meeting.




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