Council unveils major revamp for stadium ahead of Commonwealth Games

How the revamped Alexander Stadium could look

Birmingham City Council has revealed images of what a revamped Alexander Stadium could look like if the city gets to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The council said an enhanced and refurbished stadium would be pivotal to the Games and the facility had a head start on the competition because it was already established as an international athletics venue and home to UK Athletics.

A number of improvements have been planned, along with the installation of additional seating, with the intention of establishing the venue as a national centre for athletics.

A new permanent seating arrangement of up to 25,000 seats could be increased to 40,000 during the Games, with flexibility to go higher.

All athletics and para athletics disciplines for Birmingham 2022 – with the exception of the marathon, which will take place in Birmingham city centre – will take place in the Alexander Stadium ensuring that both track and field athletes benefit from the large crowds and their team’s support throughout their event.

The council said the changes would also strengthen Birmingham’s reputation as the ‘City of Running’; a reputation it has earned by hosting world class international athletics, including the Diamond League.

In addition, the British Championships/ World Trials; British Masters Championships and English Schools Championships will all take place at Alexander Stadium this year.

The World Indoor Athletics Championships will also be staged at the city’s Barclaycard Arena in 2018. This will be the city’s second hosting of the event, having previously staged it in 2003. Additionally, the inaugural Birmingham International Marathon will take place in October 2017. Starting at the Alexander Stadium it will see thousands of people celebrate Birmingham as the home of running.

The city said it would also return to the tradition of having an athletics stadium stage the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the Games.

“The refurbished stadium will provide a legacy to a core Commonwealth Games sport, benefitting future generations of athletes, which cannot be achieved when athletics takes place on a temporary track in a football stadium,” it said.

Local athletics clubs including Birchfield Harriers, winners of the British Athletics League Premiership 2016, and local schools and the community will go on to benefit from the multi-use spaces, including a 400m warm-up track. This is being incorporated into the plans to ensure that Alexander Stadium has the technical capacity of an international venue.