Bristol Arena transport package under review as costs rise significantly

A multi-million pound package of planned transport links to an upcoming concert venue is under review amid soaring costs.

In October 2022, the West of England Combined Authority (Weca) committee awarded £6.6m for infrastructure around the site of the planned Bristol Arena.

This included new walking and cycling routes and upgraded junctions.

A report presented to Weca says the bill has since rocketed to more than £10m due to soaring inflation, reports the BBC.

While the 19,000-seat arena itself is not at risk of being axed, the taxpayer-funded sustainable transport project around the former Brabazon Hangars in Filton is now under review.

West of England Metro Mayor Dan Norris said he wanted to establish exactly why the scheme would now cost so much more, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

He said he wanted to look into the original figures provided by Conservative-run South Gloucestershire Council, to see if they were “wildly optimistic” or if something unforeseen had happened since then, said the BBC report.

The council’s leader, Toby Savage, said it was “disappointing but not at all surprising” that the Labour metro mayor had singled out the local authority.

“The report to the Weca committee was clear that inflation and higher prices for utilities were to blame,” Mr Savage added.

The arena infrastructure package includes four routes for walking and cycling, including segregated cycle lanes, wider pavements and better pedestrian crossings, along with new traffic signals and junctions near the arena and the relocation of bus stops.

Developers of the arena YTL are providing a further £60m, secured through the planning process, on a range of other measures, such as road improvements, a new footbridge across the railway, a bus gate, park and ride, and shuttle buses.


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