Birmingham & Black Country

National Indoor Arena in Birmingham set for £20m revamp

Impression of new look NIA
Image caption The NIA was officially opened in 1991

A £20.6m plan to revamp the National Indoor Arena (NIA) in Birmingham has been announced.

Work at the venue would include a new "showcase" entrance and improved facilities.

Officially opened in 1991, the venue has hosted many different events ranging from international sport to concerts.

Subject to planning, work on the project is set to get under way in late 2012.

The project will be funded by a commercial loan from Birmingham City Council.

Councillor Mike Whitby, leader of the council, said the NIA was a "vital asset" for the city.

'Fulfil the ambitions'

He said it generated £150m in economic benefit and supported about 2,500 jobs in the wider economy.

"Clearly, if we are to retain and grow our reputation as an events city we need to invest in the future.

"I am delighted that we are able to innovate and invest in infrastructure," Mr Whitby added.

The NIA is one of the NEC Group's venues.

Paul Thandi, chief executive officer of the group, said the investment represented a "significant modernisation of the site to create an exciting and iconic contemporary venue".

He added: "It also offers the chance to fulfil the ambitions of the city to be the place to visit for first-class facilities and the world's best performers."

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