Co-op Live, a new arena under construction in Manchester, has opened bookings for its pre-opening and opening season events at the end of 2023 heading into 2024.

The new 23,500-capacity area is set to announce its first wave of events in summer this year, as it heads towards its December 2023 opening.

Co-op Live’s investors include City Football Group – which owns Premier League club Manchester City – and equal joint venture partner and developer Oak View Group, as well as artist Harry Styles. The arena will be located on the Etihad Campus, where Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium is based.

The arena has been designed to be a music-first venue with the ability to change and adapt capacity and seating arrangements for various types of events. Co-op Live will have a bowl design and the ceiling height has been lowered to 24m to improve acoustics and create intimacy.

Other facilities will include 14 dressing rooms and backstage offices, as well as a 330-tonne rigging capacity.

In a bid to make touring more eco-friendly, the venue will have rooftop solar panels, rainwater harvesting, heat source and smart building solutions, 100% electric and sustainable transport solutions, sustainable food sourcing and zero waste to landfill.

With bookings now open for Co-op Live, Dave Hough has been appointed as programming manager, and will act as the venue’s booker with a focus on arena tours. Hough was previously in a role with venue management and entertainment company, ASM Global, where he led programming for seven venues across the UK. He will start his new role with Co-Op Live in May.

Katie Musham has been part of the project since 2020 as head of partnerships and is moving into the role of director of strategic programming.

Co-chairperson, OVG International, Jessica Koravos, who will be working alongside Musham, said: “Manchester is one of the hottest destinations in the UK for live events and Co-op Live will be the ultimate stage. The design of the venue works for the planet, for the fans and the artists.

“We are redefining live with the biggest capacity, paired with our low ceiling, seats closer to the action, largest standing floor and our unique black box bowl that creates a nightclub intimacy to connect the energy on stage with the crowd like nowhere else in the UK.”

Image: OVG