Birmingham’s Alexander Stadium is set to undergo a £70m (€80.4m/$99.5m) upgrade ahead of the English city’s hosting of the 2022 Commonwealth Games multi-sport event.

The development will include expanding the 40-year-old venue’s capacity from 12,700 to 40,000, with 20,000 of these seats to be retained after the Games.

The project will establish the Alexander Stadium as the largest UK athletics venue outside of London.

Other planned improvements include the addition of new community sports facilities, a permanent warm-up track and a new conference meeting space.

According to the BBC, UK Prime Minister Theresa May will confirm the plans during a visit to Birmingham today (Wednesday), as well as set out how the investment will boost both the local community and the West Midlands region.

“Birmingham’s dynamism, diversity and ambition capture exactly what it is to be part of the Commonwealth and I’m sure that in four years’ time, the people of this city will host an incredible event which showcases the very best of Britain to the world,” Mrs May said.

The Alexander Stadium currently serves as the administrative home for the UK Athletics organisation and is often used to stage Diamond League events. It will act as the centrepiece of the 2022 Games, hosting both the opening and closing ceremonies as well as athletics events.

The 2018 Commonwealth Games are currently taking place on the Gold Coast in Australia.

Image: Birmingham 2022