From the Stone Roses to The Smiths to Oasis, Manchester’s roster of historic musical acts is seriously impressive. And a city with so much world-renowned talent surely deserves a world-renowned venue, right? Well, the city’s brand-new arena, Co-op Live, looks like it might be just that.
The ginormous venue is set to open in April 2024 and will have a capacity of 23,500. It is the city’s second arena (after the AO arena) but is the first venue of its kind to be built with concert acoustics at the top of the priority list. What’s more, it is being backed by the likes of Harry Styles and Bruce Springsteen, who have both offered design input.
Once completed, Co-op Live will feature an innovative ‘smart bowl’, with the largest floor space of any indoor venue in the country and a ceiling that’s lower than average. To optimise visuals, there will be zero corporate branding within the bowl. There will also be 32 bars, restaurants and lounges dotted around the arena.
Although it was originally set to open in December this year, a spokesperson for the venue confirmed that it is ‘on the homestretch’. They also promised that it will be the most sustainable arena in the UK, thanks to the use of solar energy and a no-single-use-plastic policy.
Harry Styles commented: ‘Manchester is an incredible city, filled with incredible people and I couldn’t be happier being involved in this project. It very much feels like coming home.’
A short distance from Etihad Stadium, the project is a joint venture between Oak View Group (OVG) and City Football Group. Jessica Koravoc, of OVG, said: ‘Co-op Live is about the fan and the artist, it is specially designed to deliver the best sound, atmosphere and experience for everyone who walks through our doors. Innovative technology and design will bring a unique live entertainment experience to the UK.’