Construction Work Begins On Brno’s CZK 6 Billion Multi-Purpose Arena
The construction work is scheduled to take almost three years. Credit: Brno City Municipality.
Brno, Sept 19 (CTK) – The construction of the multi-purpose Brno Arena, the city’s largest strategic project costing almost CZK 6 billion, was launched at the Brno Exhibition Grounds yesterday, with Brno Mayor Marketa Vankova and Prime Minister Petr Fiala (both ODS) attending the cornerstone ceremony.
Vankova described the day as the most important of her political career. Fiala said he appreciated that Brno had “big ambitions”.
“I am a proud citizen of Brno and I like the fact that it has always been able to think like a big city,” said Fiala. “We should be happy that the city and the mayor are embarking on big and bold projects.” He added that he believed the arena would significantly expand Brno’s options and attract visitors.
Vankova said the project had been under discussion in Brno for many years and had taken shape in February 2019, with the decision made to build a modern, multipurpose arena in the western part of the exhibition grounds.
Together with the City of Brno, the investors are three municipal companies: Arena Brno, Brno Communications, and the Teplarny Brno heating plant. Arena Brno will own the facility and operate it for the first few years.
The city’s original intention was to find a private entity to operate the arena, which would conclude a lease agreement with the city and pay the agreed sum annually, but no such private partner was found. The city therefore decided to run the facility through a new municipal company.
Brno Communications will become the owner and operator of seven outdoor areas. “We want to use the 1,179 parking spaces as efficiently as possible,” said company general director and arena project manager Ludek Borovy.
Teplarny Brno will build an electricity supply distribution system at the site, provide combined generation of power, heating and air conditioning for the arena and build charging stations for electric vehicles in the adjacent parking areas.
The contractor is Hochtief CZ, which will build the arena for CZK 4.4 billion. The city expects the total costs to be CZK 5.76 billion, which includes a reserve of one billion. The National Sports Agency has contributed CZK 300 million to the construction, the South Moravian Region gave another CZK 200 million, and CZK 1.95 billion will come from a loan from the Ceska Sporitelna bank. The rest will be funded from the city’s budget. The bank loan will be repaid by 2050, at an interest rate of 4.87%, so the city will pay CZK 1.7 billion more than was borrowed.
The construction work is scheduled to take 33 months, or almost three years.
The opposition parties in the city assembly are opposed to the construction of the arena.
“Not only will the construction draw, and is already drawing, money from the city budget, which is needed for a number of more important and strategic projects, but it will generate further losses after completion,” wrote Jasna Flamikova (Greens) on Facebook yesterday. “The city is taking out a loan for its construction that will swallow CZK 1.7 billion in interest alone.”
However, the city leadership is convinced that the arena will be profitable. Vankova cited economic analysis suggesting the arena would be worthwhile, and said the city is currently negotiating with possible operators of the arena, without elaborating.
Fiala also said it is good that the arena is being built, even at a cost of billions of crowns. “It is a wise decision,” he said. “Brno inhabitants and the whole wider surrounding areas are waiting for such an arena.”