Tampere Deck Arena has taken a step forward to becoming Finland’s largest events arena with the laying of the foundation stone for the project.

The 13,500-seat arena will be the focal point of Tampere Deck, a new district that is being developed over railway tracks in Tampere city centre. The foundations for the building were laid yesterday (Thursday), with the Arena set for completion by the end of 2021.

Designed by architect Daniel Libeskind, the Tampere Deck will bring together the eastern and western city districts on both sides of the railway tracks. Joining the old city districts, the Deck aims to provide a completely new kind of living environment.

It will comprise residential services, business and trade premises, a hotel and the arena. The railway line will serve to bring event guests into central Tampere from across Finland with the entire district set for completion in 2025.

According to director Tero Tenhunen, as a centrally located multi-purpose facility, the Arena will be a unique venue on a global scale. He said: “The City of Tampere has the ambitious goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2030. This new district allows for the further development of the railway station area and the entire central Tampere.

“In this way, we are able to promote a more tightly-knit urban environment, build great public transport connections, light transport pathways and smooth travel routes both locally, regionally and nationally. All of this is in support of the City of Tampere’s goals of attracting more people, improving the city residents’ everyday life and achieving carbon neutrality.”

In June, Tampere Deck Arena was confirmed as the main venue for the 2022 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. The Arena is projected to attract over one million annual visitors, generating as much as €28m (£25.1m/$30.9m) of added value for the city per year.

Lauri Lyly, Mayor of Tampere, said: “This is not just a project for Tampere and Pirkanmaa residents. The deck will house a first-rate arena, which, when completed, will be the most modern one in Finland, and an excellent addition to the events venues in the country.

“The arena combines urban development, a new area of city blocks and a multi-purpose arena to form an area never seen in Finland before. Even now, about 40 per cent of the customers of experience activities in Tampere come from outside Pirkanmaa. Tampere Deck and the Arena will take us into a new era of experiences.”

Image: Tampere Deck Arena