Swansea Arena is at the centre of the Copr Bay masterplan, and a key part of the strategic regeneration of the city.  A local destination as well as a regional attractor, bringing people back to the city centre who may not have been in Swansea for years. 


Project Details +

Project Details

LOCATION: Swansea (UK)

CLIENT: City and County of Swansea

DATE: 2015–2022

STATUS: Completed

SIZE: 9,800m² Arena (Concert capacity 3,500, Theatre capacity 2,196, Conference mode 788)

Credits +



Concept Design:

Andrea Collar, Anna Czigler, Marina Kindelan, Friedrich Ludewig, Isabel de la Mora, Penny Sperbund, Keigo Yoshida

Detail Design:

Grace Chan, Laura Cooke, Blerta Copa, Anna Czigler, Petro Kailis, Jon Iriondo Goena, Elli Liverakou, Friedrich Ludewig, Glenn Moorley, Paolo Moretto, Gemma Serra, Keigo Yoshida

Construction Design: 

Mark Broom, Lizy Huyghe, Friedrich Ludewig, Glenn Moorley, Charles Piggott, Ana Rodriguez, Laura Vitzthum




Peter Brett Associates 

Murphy Facade Studio

Capita/ GL Hearn 

ME Engineers



Mayer Brown

Rivington Land




Bevan Consultancy 


Mott Macdonald


The Swansea coal and copper boom of the 19th Century created vast harbour structures, coal drops and railway goods yards to load and unload coal and copper ore. Little remains of this industrial heritage, leaving some zones in centre of Swansea with a sense of emptiness and abandonment.  

Swansea Arena anchors a new north–south axis reconnecting the city centre with the coast and marina.

The exterior is designed to address all directions equally, the city centre, the passing traffic and the bay. The facade appears as a fluid arrangement of bifurcating curves wrapped over all sides of the building, changing in response to the spatial requirements of the programme within. The entrance level is fully glazed on all sides, creating views between the foyer, VIP rooms, conference areas and the new landscaped park.

One revetment wall remained of the old Coal Drops, a 5m tall podium that allowed coal to be dropped into waiting cargo boats. Incorporating the old wall, the podium has been rebuilt to provide the base of a new concert arena, a parking and loading structure and a new landscaped park above.

The arena is designed as a 3500 capacity venue, for seated and standing performances, concerts, conferences and exhibitions, with a high degree of adaptability. 

The foyer continues the language of the exterior curtain into a tutu mesh ceiling above winding helical stairs. Inside the auditorium, fixed acoustic foam and plaster sculpted like a red curtain provides acoustic refraction and absorption. 

The facade above is a softly pleated curtain, made from corrugated aluminium panels in molten copper colour. After dawn, the facade awakes to life, with 100.000 individually programmable LEDs creating the largest digital facade in the UK, a huge digital screen communicating the music and performances taking place inside into a visual language visible from afar. 


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