Madison Square Garden sphere in Stratford gets the green light – Daily Mail

March 23, 2022 by No Comments

A giant music venue branded a ‘monstrous glowing orb’ has been approved by a London planning committee – despite hundreds of residents complaining that it would ‘blight’ the area.

Madison Square Garden’s 300-foot-high ‘Sphere’ was given the go ahead by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) last night to be built on an empty spot of land between Stratford Station and the Olympic Park.

The music venue, said to cost a reported £800milllion, will contain a 21,500-capacity arena, as well as bars and restaurants, and the project has been hailed as a ‘pioneer in the next generation of immersive experiences.’

It is claimed the sphere, which has been backed by University of East London and former Culture Secretary Matt Hancock, would boost London’s economy by £2.5 billion

Paul Westbury, from MSG, said the application had gone through a ‘thorough assessment’ and the ‘state of the art venue’ would help make Stratford ‘a global destination for music and technology’ and that the plans had been ‘informed by’ feedback from residents.

But the approval faced a furious backlash from local residents over huge LED advertising displays that will be placed around the entire structure which they believe will ‘blight the area’ with noise and light pollution.

A statement from West Ham MP Lyn Brown, opposing scheme, described it as a ‘monstrosity’ and raised fears  about added pressure on local transport and in particular the station at Stratford which already copes with travellers to the Westfield shopping centre and West Ham’s 60,000-seater stadium.

In her statement, which was read by a local councillor on her behalf, she said: ‘The last thing we need is another venue disgorging its audience into an already overcrowded transport hub.’

Madison Square Garden’s 300-foot-high ‘Sphere’ was given the go ahead by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) last night to be built on an empty spot of land near the Olympic Park in east London

The approval faced a furious backlash from local residents over huge LED advertising displays that will be placed around the entire structure which they believe will ‘blight the area’ with noise and light pollution

The music venue, reported to come with an £800million price tag, is set to be built on an empty spot of land between Stratford Station and the Olympic Park. Pictured: The current site and proposal

The Labour MP also scolded the LLDC over the fact the site was previously public land which could have been used for housing before it was sold to real estate business Westfield and ultimately to MSG.

‘The LLDC has failed to deliver the positive changes that local residents need… it is also removing the ability of local residents and their elected councils to have an effective say about what gets built in their communities,’ she told the Guardian.

More than 1,000 local residents formally objected to the planning application, while a petition calling for the project to be scrapped received more than 2,000 signatures.

Reacting to news of the approval, Londoner David Hardman said: ‘Words can’t express how disgusting it is that an unelected body can impose an unwanted giant advertising monstrosity in Newham.’

A resident added: ‘Big MSG Sphere coming to London Town. I, for …….

Source: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10643167/Madison-Square-Garden-sphere-Stratford-gets-green-light.html

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