The first pictures of Leeds Arena

MUSIC fans have been given given their first glimpse of the treats in store at the new concert arena planned for Leeds.

City council bosses have released computer-generated images of the so-called 'super theatre' design proposed for the arena.

The groundbreaking layout means none of the venue's 12,500 seats would be more than 68 metres away from centre stage.

At other arenas in the UK the maximum seat-to-stage distance can be more than 90 metres.

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Additional images provide an overhead view of how the facility would fit into the five-acre Clay Pit Lane site the council has chosen as its home.

The pictures were released ahead of the opening of a public exhibition of the plans for the development.

Visitors will be asked for their views on how the exterior of the building should look and the best uses for the open space that would surround it.

Leeds City Council's joint leader, Coun Andrew Carter, said: "We would like as many residents as possible to come along.

"The arena is going to be a fantastic addition to Leeds and I think people will be genuinely excited when they see what it will have to offer."

The exhibition will run at the Merrion shopping centre in Leeds for a week from Saturday.

It will then be at Leeds City Museum from September 21 to 27 and Leeds Central Library from September 28 until October 3.

For more details, visit the www.leeds.gov.uk/arena web page.

The council is expected to learn this month if publicly-funded regional development agency Yorkshire Forward's proposed 18m support for the project has been approved by the Government.

If all goes according to plan, construction work is due to start by the end of 2010.

Research has shown the arena should create more than 300 jobs and generate nearly 30m a year for the local economy.

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Professor Peter Moizer, Dean of Leeds University Business School

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