Roof garden at Walt Disney Hall, Los Angeles
Roof garden at Walt Disney Hall, Los Angeles

The perfect site

Narrator: Home to the world's greatest tennis tournament, the Wimbledon brand is recognised across the globe. Just 15 minutes by train from Waterloo, Wimbledon is the suburban hub, with transport links second to none. Southwest trains, the underground, Crosslink, Tramlink, nine bus routes, the end of the A3 corridor and M25, linking Heathrow and Gatwick airports. More than 4 million people live within 30 minutes travel of the site. The station is located just 200 meters from the site, which is at the rear of what is currently a supermarket.

Narrator: As well as having state of the art acoustics, the hall will be a stunning addition to the world's architectural heritage. And create a beautiful and peaceful town square surrounded by shops and restaurants.

Frank Gehry: The character in the design of the hall if it's done right, it opens to the community, brings the community in. Because it's not in the center of London, it has an opportunity to be more focused on making the music and making the relationships with people in the community and making it a place that people from further away than even London will want to come.

An established musical and cultural reputation

A Gehry Concert Hall would transform Wimbledon and Merton into an important international cultural destination.

The concert hall will expand and consolidate what is already a significant cultural cluster in and around Wimbledon and Merton, creating an important cultural hub along the Broadway.

  1. Wimbledon Concert Hall
  2. HMV and Odeon cinemas
  3. New Wimbledon Theatre
  4. Polka Theatre
  5. Wimbledon Station
Wimbledon, The Broadway
Wimbledon, The Broadway

Growing importance of the suburbs

Society habits are changing. People are working more and more from home, and reluctant to travel to the centre. In many cities, Paris for example, great concert halls have been established in the suburbs.

The 15-minute neighbourhood and the 30-minute city are ideas promoted by the Late Richard Rogers in which a community could be satisfied in all its needs within a 15-minute cycle ride from home - and by Arup considering the life contained within a travel distance of 30 minutes.

Renzo Piano, architect of the Shard, and many cultural projects has written: “We need to transform the peripheries (suburbs) and fertilise them with great public buildings such as universities, concert halls and libraries.”

A Rich Cultural Hinterland

4 million people live within 30 minutes of travel. A survey carried out by the Audience Agency indicated that 50% of the concert hall’s audience would come from an 8-mile catchment area surrounding Wimbledon (identified in purple on the map below). Arts attendance by the population living within this catchment area is more engaged than the London average with a significant audience attending classical music and theatres.

8 mile catchment area surrounding Wimbledon
8 mile catchment area surrounding Wimbledon

Report conclusion: “The estimated catchment area around the proposed site for Wimbledon Concert Hall contains great potential in terms of audiences for classical music and a wider range of music genres, and support for such a venue. Combined with the potential within the large population of London the concert hall has a good sized market-place to draw on. If WCH decides to present a wider range of music genres it would greatly increase the potential audience.”