Massive Attack call for Bristol city centre arena

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Robert Del NajaImage source, EPA
Image caption,
Robert Del Naja, aka 3D, said Bristol needed an arena to inspire musicians of the future

Massive Attack have added their voice to those calling on Bristol's mayor to build an arena in the city centre.

The band's 3D (Robert Del Naja) said Marvin Rees had to reject an "untested plan for a big shed in a car park in the suburbs".

A decision on whether to build the arena at Temple Island in the city centre, or at the Brabazon hangar in Filton, was deferred again last week.

Mr Rees said he wanted "clarity on options".

Speaking after a performance in Berlin, Del Naja said: "We need an arena that belongs to Bristol, that is at Bristol's public transport hub and contributes to city centre life.

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"Something that the city can be proud of, that will inspire future generations of musicians.

"Rather than going back to square one with an untested plan for a big shed in a car park in the suburbs."

Image source, YTL
Image caption,
YTL has proposed a 16,000 seat arena arena at the former Brabazon hangar at Filton

The arena project, first mooted in 2003, has been beset by delays and rising costs.

Construction firm Buckingham Group said last month it was "very confident" it could deliver the arena at Temple Island for the approved budget of £123m, despite a value-for-money report suggesting it would cost £156m.

An alternative site has been offered at Filton, which would be funded by its Malaysian owners YTL Developments.

Mr Rees said last week he was disappointed with a council report examining the two options, asking the companies behind the Temple Island site to "clarify their offers".

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