Plans by North Somerset Council to transform Tropicana into a major entertainment hub have progressed remarkably. This is as a result of the council’s £1.1 million bid for an open arena in Weston-super-Mare making the final shortlist of projects to receive funding from the government.
The government has already given out 6million worth of project funds from the available £40 million of the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund, and North Somerset Council is hoping to net a share in the remaining £34 million.
The 9,000-seat outdoor arena is expected to open up the Tropicana and offer a diverse range of activities such as theatre performances, live music, art exhibitions, and educational events.
The council also has plans of establishing an extra indoor event space with 1,000 seating capacity that would feature a new roof, retractable seating, sound system and lighting. There will also be space for workshops and studios along with improved cafe facilities and a cycle hire centre. The project is expected to create an estimated 60 new jobs and yield £2.2m each year.
The council’s bid is one of about 60 projects from across the country which has made it through to the final round. Authorities are expected to submit their final detailed bids early next year while successful bids will be revealed next spring.
Council leader, Nigel Ashton, while pleased that the council’s bid made it to the next round, acknowledged that they have a huge hurdle to pass as the next round is certain to be extremely competitive. He stated that the council will be partnering with firms to develop a stronger bid that will surely be successful.
Bristol, on the other hand, is yet to decide on a venue for their arena, with authorities looking at either Brabazon Hangar at Filton Airfield or Temple Island.