Mayor of London rejects Sphere arena plans

Featured Image: Sphere Entertainment

Plans for a new Sphere arena in London have been rejected by Mayor Sadiq Khan on the grounds that the current proposals would have an “unacceptable negative impact” on local residents.

Sphere Entertainment, formerly known as Madison Square Garden Entertainment, is seeking to build a venue with 17,500 seats in the heart of Stratford, East London. The company recently opened a Sphere venue in the US city of Las Vegas, with the arena featuring the world’s largest LED screen.

In March 2022, the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) approved plans for a Sphere venue in the English capital. At the time, Paul Westbury, executive vice-president of development and construction at Sphere Entertainment, said the application had passed through a “thorough assessment”, adding that the venue would help make Stratford “a global destination for music and technology”.

The project subsequently moved on to the desk of the Mayor of London, who yesterday (Monday) rejected the plans due to the level of light pollution it would create, its electricity bill, and the impact it would have on local heritage sites. The London Sphere has been designed by Populous, which also designed the Vegas venue.

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