Design & Development

Arena for Milan breaks ground

Images: CTS Eventim

CTS Eventim, and design team David Chipperfield Architects and Arup, have marked the start of work commencing in earnest on Arena for Milan.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the project, which was also attended by Mayor of Milan Giuseppe Sala, was held yesterday (Tuesday) on the venture which seeks to not only create a new landmark for Milan, but also boost Italy’s sports and live entertainment scene.

The Arena, which was designed by David Chipperfield Architects in collaboration with Arup, remains on course to be finished on schedule by the end of 2025, ready to host ice hockey and para ice hockey competitions during the Milano Cortina 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Italian underground and special engineering company Trevi, which was appointed in May, was praised for its efficiency in laying the foundations for the Arena. The Eteria consortium of Italian construction companies Itinera and Vianini, appointed in September, will now play a pivotal role in the above-ground construction phase.

Klaus-Peter Schulenberg, CEO of CTS Eventim, said: “This groundbreaking ceremony marks the next step of an extraordinary journey for Italy’s live entertainment scene. We extend our sincere thanks to Mayor Sala for his support and dedication to this project.

“Together with David Chipperfield and Arup, we envision this new landmark as a cultural and sporting hub that will showcase Milan to the world. The new Arena also aligns perfectly with our venue strategy. Our extensive expertise in managing venues of this calibre will ensure it integrates seamlessly into Milan’s cultural landscape and Eventim’s global live entertainment and ticketing network.”

Sir David Chipperfield added: “The new Arena will be a major contribution to the public infrastructure of the city, and the result of a collaborative process and enthusiasm from all sides.

“The form of the building is rooted in Milan’s rich cultural heritage. It echoes the elliptical form of the city’s former Roman amphitheatre, giving a contemporary expression to a historic archetype and creating a new place for gathering and collective entertainment.

“I look forward to seeing it become an anchor for the new neighbourhood of Santa Giulia and enrich the public realm of the city of Milan.”

The Arena will have a capacity of up to 16,000 and will be Italy’s largest indoor venue when it opens. In March last year, ticketing and live entertainment company CTS Eventim, developer and future operator of the venue, appointed British architect Chipperfield and his firm to design the arena. David Chipperfield Architects has worked with Arup on the design of the arena, which will form part of the Milano Santa Giulia urban development.

CTS Eventim took over the development of the Arena in August 2021. Oak View Group had initially announced the venue as its first European project through a partnership with Live Nation around the time Milan won the 2026 Olympic bid in 2019, but the rights were switched to CTS Eventim.

Giammichele Melis, project director for Arup, said yesterday: “We have worked closely with CTS Eventim and David Chipperfield to design a spectacular venue which has been conceived with ambitious energy efficiency and sustainability targets.

“Our current statutory site supervision role gives us the opportunity to keep supporting CTS Eventim and the whole team to see this project through.”