Aberdeen plans new £200m conference centre to replace the AECC

Aberdeen City Council has announced plans for a new £200m replacement for the Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre (AECC).

Aberdeen plans new £200m conference centre to replace the AECC
Aberdeen plans new £200m conference centre to replace the AECC

The local authority approved proceeding with the development of a new, larger AECC, in conjunction with a commerical development partner, at a meeting today (31 October). Its preferred choice of site for the new venue is a site close to Aberdeen International Airport.

The AECC will continue to operate until the new venue is opened, which is expected to be in 2017.

The existing venue hosted  611 events last year, attracting more than 300,000 people. Home to the Aberdeen Conference Centre and the GE Oil & Gas Arena, its turnover grew almost three-fold between 2001/02 and 2012/13, from £2.5m to £7.1m - the best year in its 28-year history.

It has also increased its economic contribution to the city and Aberdeenshire from around £12m in 1989 to an estimated £109m in 2011/12 and supports more than 1,000 jobs in the region.

The AECC was opened in 1985 to house the biennial oil and gas show, Offshore Europe, which attracted a record attendance of 63,000 people in September. However the venue and the surrounding infrastructure servicing the show are now at capacity, and the centre misses out on live entertainment due to its small seating capacity.

The new venue will open up opportunities to attract more concerts and other shows which require a larger capacity.  

Brian Horsburgh, managing director of AECC, said: "I am delighted with today’s decision. This will enable AECC to take a quantum leap forward as a world-class centre for business events and entertainment, and to increasingly contribute to the region’s economy going forward, as a key element of Aberdeen city’s infrastructure."

He added: "Our challenge will be to find ways to continue to grow the business over the next three to four years until the new centre is completed in 2017." 

In July, the AECC agreed a 10-year sponsorship deal to re-name its AECC Aberdeen Arena to the 'GE Oil & Gas Arena, Aberdeen' for an undisclosed six-figure annual sum.

The AECC recently announced that it will be hosting the Oceans 2017 marine industry conference. 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in
Live Union welcomes three new faces

Live Union welcomes three new faces

Marketing director, business development director and production manager all join the London-based team

No one should be expected to work for free and the same goes for speakers

No one should be expected to work for free and the same goes for speakers

It's unethical to expect speaking gigs to be unpaid, says Nick Gold, MD of Speakers Corner.

'I don't think I would have had the same opportunity and support in a bigger company'

'I don't think I would have had the same opportunity and support in a bigger company'

A-List 2019: Olivia Chilton, senior account executive at Clear Partners.

In pictures: Meet Dublin in London cruise

In pictures: Meet Dublin in London cruise

The Dublin Convention Bureau hosted its 10th anniversary 'Meet Dublin in London' on the Thames.

Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel opens in Glasgow

Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel opens in Glasgow

Luxury hotel has 113 rooms, a Bo & Birdy restaurant and bar and private roof garden with views of the city.

'I'm fortunate to work on events that you sometimes have to pinch yourself at'

'I'm fortunate to work on events that you sometimes have to pinch yourself at'

A-List 2019: Michael Charles, creative director, Julia Charles Event Management.

Why an acquisition is a bit like a first date

Why an acquisition is a bit like a first date

Co-founder of FIRST, Mark Riches, spoke at the C&IT Breakfast Briefing about why not all M&A activity is a success.

C&IT Wellness Report hub is now live

C&IT Wellness Report hub is now live

Subscribers can read the entire report online now, which has been created in partnership with Stress Matters.

Dublin: A serious place to do business and a great place to relax

Accessibility, good value for money, excellent service, top-notch hotels and venues, history and culture and quality food are all key factors for event planners when deciding on where to host their event. And Dublin is a destination that ticks not just one or two, but all of those boxes and more.

Who are the fastest growing event agencies?

Who are the fastest growing event agencies?

Based on our annual Top 50 of UK agencies, we've crunched the numbers to see whose event-based turnover is growing rapidly.

LATEST JOBS