Gateshead arena and conference centre given green light

12th July 2023 | Jack Oliver

Plans for a 12,500-capacity Sage Arena and an International Conference Centre (ICC) in Gateshead have been given the go-ahead by local councillors.

Located on the River Tyne, the development looks to transform the area into one of the UK’s most dynamic visitor locations, and is expected to bring in over one million visitors to the quayside on an annual basis.

The Sage ICC is set to include 61,570 sq ft of exhibition space, 27,125 sq ft of adaptable meeting spaces, 17 conference rooms, and a banqueting suite.

Also included in the proposals are revised plans for 344-bed dual-branded hotel, which has been relocated to vacant land within the Baltic Quarter opposite the Sage development.

The land occupied by the hotel in the original proposals is now set to be opened up as an urban park, which will aim to improve biodiversity in the area and provide improved pedestrian access.

The updated proposals include plans to change the timeline of the original development, with the ICC and hotel expected to open in autumn 2025, and the arena set to open in 2027.

Gateshead Council said the potential economic impact of the development will be “transformational” for local residents and businesses. It expects that £99m per year will be directly invested into the local economy while an additional £70m will go every year to local industries, particularly hospitality.

Martin Gannon, leader of Gateshead Council, said: “Today marks another major milestone in the project and we’re looking forward to bringing the Sage Arena and ICC to Gateshead, attracting high-profile events and conferences to our region. The development will bring numerous opportunities and benefits to our residents, attracting visitors and creating jobs and bringing millions of pounds of investment to Gateshead and the north east.”


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