Thought one concert arena was enough for the Greenwich Peninsula? Plans released by Greenwich Council reveal it’s giving serious consideration to a second, open-air, arena on the west side of the peninsula.
The idea is floated in a new masterplan for Greenwich Peninsula West, designed to set out how the area could look in 15 years or so.
On the site of the former Tunnel Refineries/Syral plant, it suggests a “multi-purpose complex”. “Designed specifically to hold large outdoor concert events the form of the complex could be configured to offer picturesque views westward to Canary Wharf and beyond,” it says.
“The complex could be developed in phases, as demand & uses change. Configured to primarily to hold concerts and other similar events, the complex should ideally be flexible enough to also host sports fixtures.”
It adds that a university or sports training centre could be located at the venue, with photos of a Rolling Stones gig and baseball stadia in St Louis, Missouri and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
As well as being just half a mile from the 20,000-capacity O2 arena, the proposed site is just a couple of miles from The Valley, which holds 27,000 people. Any new sporting venue is likely to need a tenant, but Charlton Athletic have twice rejected plans to move to the peninsula since the 1980s, most recently passing on a proposal which would have seen them take over the Millennium Dome.
Any proposal for an open-air concert venue is likely to cause uproar on the Isle of Dogs, with noise likely to cross the river towards Cubitt Town. A leading Tower Hamlets councillor joined residents last year petitioning against the Peninsula Festival, which has since been given the go-ahead.
The report also acknowledges that transport links will need to be improved, and proposes a new bus station on the west side of the peninsula as well as a Docklands Light Railway extension “from Canning Town or Royal Victoria” (about which there’ll be more on this site in the coming weeks).
The masterplan is part of a package of proposals for various areas of the borough put forward by Greenwich Council. Plans for the Charlton riverside envisage a “Charlton Garden City” with space for creative industries close to the Thames Barrier. They’ve already stirred up debate at the Charlton Champion.
Another masterplan, for Woolwich town centre, suggests demolishing the Waterfront Leisure Centre, replacing it with a new facility in the town centre and extending Hare Street towards the riverside.
All the proposals can be inspected online, with the Greenwich Peninsula proposals to be exhibited at the Forum on Trafalgar Road on Thursday 23 and Saturday 25 February. The Charlton and Woolwich schemes can be seen at The Valley on Monday 20 February, and Woolwich Library on Saturday 3 and Monday 5 March.
(Friday update: There’s also a plan for Eltham town centre, which is discussed at London Masala and Chips.)