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The O2 arena (London)

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The O2 arena (London)

This article is about the indoor arena located in London. For other uses, see O2 Arena.

The O2 Arena
North Greenwich Arena
Location The O2
Drawdock Road
North Greenwich
London, SE10 0BB
England, United Kingdom

51°30′10.79″N 0°0′11.28″E / 51.5029972°N 0.0031333°E / 51.5029972; 0.0031333Coordinates: 51°30′10.79″N 0°0′11.28″E / 51.5029972°N 0.0031333°E / 51.5029972; 0.0031333

Built Between 2003 and 2007
Opened 24 June 2007
Owner English Partnerships
Operator Ansco Arena Limited (AEG Live) Europe
Surface Versatile
Architect Populous[1] (then HOK Sport)
Structural engineer Buro Happold
Services engineer M-E Engineers
General contractor Sir Robert McAlpine
Capacity Concerts: 20,000[2]
Basketball: 20,000[3]
AEG Live (2007–present)
ATP World Tour Finals (2009–present)
2012 Summer Olympics
2012 Summer Paralympics
Hillsong Conference Europe (2010, 2011) (2013-Present)
Euroleague Final Four (2013)

The O2 Arena (visually typeset in some branding as The O2 arena, referred to as North Greenwich Arena in the context of the 2012 Summer Olympics and 2012 Summer Paralympics) is a multi-purpose indoor arena located in the centre of The O2, a large entertainment complex on the Greenwich Peninsula in London, England. It is named after its main sponsor, the telecommunications company O2.

With a capacity of up to 20,000[2] depending on the event, it is second-largest arena in the UK (after the Manchester Arena) and one of the largest in Europe. In 2008, The O2 Arena took the crown of the world's busiest music arena from the Manchester Arena, a title which it had held since 2001.[4] The closest underground station to the venue is the North Greenwich station on the Jubilee line.


Following the closure of the Millennium Experience at the end of 2000, the Millennium Dome was leased to Meridian Delta Ltd. in 2001, for redevelopment as an entertainment complex. This included plans for an indoor arena.

Construction of the arena started in 2003 and finished in 2007. Owing to the impossibility of using cranes inside the dome structure, the arena's roof was constructed on the ground within the dome and then lifted. The arena building's structure was then built around the roof. The arena building, which houses the arena and the arena concourse, is independent from all other buildings in The O2 and houses all the arena's facilities. The arena building itself takes up 40% of the total dome structure.

The seating arrangement throughout the whole arena can be modified, similar to the Manchester Arena.[5] The ground surface can also be changed between ice rink, basketball court, exhibition space, conference venue, private hire venue and concert venue.

The arena was built to reduce echoing, a common problem among London music venues.[6] U2's sound manager, Joe O'Herlihy, worked with acoustic engineers to introduce measures such as sound absorbing material on the arena roof and the bottoms of strategically placed seats to reduce echoing.

Despite The O2 Arena being open for only seven months of the year, the venue sold over 1.2 million tickets in 2007, making it the third most popular venue in the world for concerts and family shows narrowly behind the Manchester Arena (1.25 million) and Madison Square Garden in New York City (1.23 million). By 2008 it had become the world's busiest venue with sales of more than two million, taking the crown from MEN Arena.


Main article: Events at the O2 Arena
World's Busiest Arenas – 2011[7]
Venue 2011 Ticket sales for concerts/shows
O2 Arena, London, UK 1.9 million
Lanxess Arena, Cologne, Germany 1.9 million
Manchester Arena, Manchester, UK 1.2 million
Sportpaleis, Antwerp, Belgium 714,000
Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, Australia 706,000
The O2, Dublin, Dublin, Ireland 670,000
Palais Omnisports de Paris-Bercy, Paris, France 659,000
Staples Center, Los Angeles, USA 633,000
Madison Square Garden, New York, USA 616,000
O2 World, Hamburg, Germany 602,000
Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Canada 582,000
LG Arena, Birmingham, UK 561,000
O2 World Berlin, Berlin, Germany 461,000


  • 2010 London Lifestyle Awards – London's Live Music Venue of the Year

See also


External links

  • Profile
  • London 2012 Olympics profile
Preceded by
Qizhong Forest Sports City Arena
ATP Year-end Championships

Succeeded by
Preceded by
Sinan Erdem Dome
Final Four

Succeeded by
Mediolanum Forum

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