£55m Olympic Park set tobe approved

Plans to build a new sports arena, outdoor venue, research centre and offices on the site of the former Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield are set to get the green light.

Friday, 11th March 2016, 5:18 am
Updated Friday, 11th March 2016, 5:26 am
The overall design of Sheffield's planned Olympic Legacy Park

The proposals – which will form the bulk of the city’s £55 million Olympic Legacy Park – have been recommended for approval by council officers ahead of a planning committee meeting on Tuesday.

Full permission is sought for a 3,000-capacity indoor arena, as well as outline permission for a 5,000-spectator stadium, a 100-bedroom hotel, an Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre to study links between sport and medicine, and 10,000 square metres of office space.

An artists impression of the Park Community Arena.

Richard Caborn, project lead for the Olympic Legacy Park, said: “We have already made a huge amount of progress and this planning recommendation represents a significant step forward for the Olympic Legacy Park.

“The Oasis Academy Don Valley is now home to its first 120 children, the UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park is starting to take shape ready for opening in October and, over the next 12 months, we will see work begin on the AWRC, the community pitch and the landscaping.

“The whole look of the area will be transformed with green spaces and wildlife-friendly habitats and we will be repositioning The Flame within the heart of the park.”

“The Park Community Arena will be a fantastic addition to the facilities and, combined with the English Institute of Sport Sheffield, iceSheffield and the Sheffield Arena, it will enhance the city’s offer and provide even more opportunities for Sheffield people to improve their health and wellbeing.”

An artists impression of the Park Community Arena.

A report to councillors says: “Overall the development represents a significant and welcomed regeneration project and secures substantial investment and employment opportunities.”

The park is a joint venture between Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and the council.

Don Valley Stadium was demolished two years ago in a cost-cutting measure and the site in Attercliffe has been cleared and prepared for the new development.

Progress has already been made on two elements of the Legacy Park – the Oasis Academy, a new school for 1,200 children aged two to 16 which opened last year, and Sheffield’s second University Technical College, aimed at students aged 14 to 18 and specialising in human science, sport and digital technology, which is currently being built.

The £3.5m Park Community Arena will house the Sheffield Sharks basketball team, as well as being available for community use.

The stadium will offer a 4G pitch where the Sheffield Eagles rugby team can play home games, with a stand for spectators.

A cafe, gym and other facilities are set to be provided, along with the hotel, which will offer rooms for visitors, including athletes and sport teams.

It is envisaged the hotel would also provide a place to stay for people attending concerts at Sheffield Arena.

Office space would be provided within the research centre, and a separate six-storey building.

The report says the company behind the scheme – Legacy Park Ltd – had justified why these facilities should be provided away from the city centre, a departure from council policy.

Under the plans, three car parks would provide 394 spaces.