Foster and Partners appointed to design Scotlands National Arena


Scottish Exhibition Centre Ltd (SEC) has announced the appointment of architects Foster and Partners as design team leader to create its new 50 million purpose-built Arena.

Foster and Partners beat off competition from several other architectural practices after achieving the highest rating in a rigorous procedure conducted in accordance with the OJEC process.

The new 12,500-seat Arena is the first major development to be undertaken in the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centres (SECC) 350 million master plan, called QD2
, which was unveiled in October 2003 revealing the venues plans to transform its 64-acre site into a complete exhibition, conference and entertainments complex.

Design work on the Arena, which is intended to be a national arena for Scotland, has started and construction is anticipated to commence in 2005 with a projected opening date of late 2007.

Speaking about the appointment of Foster and Partners, Mike Closier, chief executive of the SECC, said:

The tendering process was tough and fair it was measured on merit, price, past experience and fitness for this unique challenge. Following careful examination, marking and consideration of tenders, Foster and Partners emerged as the strongest bid and I have complete confidence in their ability to deliver a building that will not disappoint on a functional or aesthetic level. We are looking for a stunning world-class facility and we have certainly appointed the right team to achieve that.

Whilst the Arena will focus primarily on entertainments events, its flexibility will enable it to stage large and small-scale concerts, childrens shows, ice shows and sporting and other spectator events. The public will be able to enjoy an enhanced entertainments experience; there will be a wide range of food and drink outlets as well as a number of private boxes each capable of accommodating 12 people.

Chris Connell, partner at Foster and Partners, said:

We are delighted to have won the contract to design the Arena. It is great to be working with the SECC again, especially on a project of this importance to Glasgow and we look forward to designing a building that will compliment and enhance the SECCs development.

Notes to editors:

The QD2 Project is so called because it marks the second redevelopment of Queens Dock in Glasgow, the first being the construction of the SECC Clyde Auditorium, also by Foster and Partners, in 1985.