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AEG OPPOSES MSG SPHERE IN LONDON

AEG has formally opposed Madison Square Garden’s proposed MSG Sphere in London, saying the venue’s planning application is “hopelessly inadequate.”

The venue is set to be built in East London next to Westfield Stratford City shopping center, mirroring a similar development in Las Vegas that is expected to open next year. AEG says the location is problematic due to its proximity to three other major venues—London Stadium, Copper Box and AEG’s The O2—with crowds posing “a dangerous impact on local transport infrastructure.”

A planning application for the venue was submitted three years ago, but the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) will meet on 3/22 to decide its future. AEG is calling on LLDC to refuse the application and encouraging London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, to formally oppose the project.

“We believe MSG’s scheme is fundamentally the wrong proposal in the wrong location and is technically seriously flawed,” reads an AEG statement. “Far from being conceived to reflect its East London context, MSG has taken the concept developed for downtown Las Vegas and transposed it directly onto a tight and constrained site overlooked by hundreds of residential properties in Stratford.”

The promoter says the MSG Sphere—whose footprint would occupy two hectares (215,278 square feet), with a height of more than 90 meters (295 feet, the equivalent of 27 stories) and an exterior bearing a digital display of more than a million LEDs—poses a potential health risk to local residents; some living spaces would look directly onto the LED imagery.

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