UK's Socially Distanced Music Venue Shut Down Amidst Spike in COVID-19 Cases

Who could have predicted this, except literally everybody?

Also is there a more dystopian serving of word-salad than "The Virgin Money Unity Arena"?

The Virgin Money Unity Arena opened in Newcastle earlier this summer, offering live music junkies the chance to see a concert live and in person in a safe setting. Specifically, the venue's viewing area consisted of a series of enclosed platforms -- each spaced six feet apart. Individuals or small groups could watch the concert standing or seated on these platforms, while concessions and bathrooms could be accessed through a one-way system.

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17 Responses:

  1. Lloyd says:

    Contrasted with the hell of Glastonbury, having water drain through the grilled platforms and being able to see over the heads of passers-by who don't invade your personal space or mosh you to death seems pretty good.

    There could also be upmarket festival boxes with better seats, opera glasses, and concierge service delivering Pimms.

    An interesting idea. I hope their capex gets properly depreciated here, and that this creates a sustainable concert business entertainment model moving forwards.

  2. Hylyx says:

    Ahhh yes the VMUA! Every clubgoer knows that sound, as the drunk wooboy next to you is about to projectile vomit one and a half AMFs on the back of someone else and onto your boots. What a nice, familiar name for a dystopian shit show.

    • Lloyd says:

      One does not vomit Pimm's.

      On the other hand, it is indeed not traditional to drink Pimm's north of the Watford Gap.

      • Andrew Macpherson says:

        Well, you've clearly never been out in Harrogate on a Friday night.

  3. Jonathan says:

    It’s jarring to see my humble city on jwz’s blog. Not that I’ve been to the city for 7+ months.

  4. Ben says:

    Why wouldn't you stagger the platforms so that you're not looking directly at the one in front of you?

    • Lloyd says:

      interferes with security line of sight, makes emptying the venue harder, means the concierge can't drive the golfcart with your Pimm's to you.

      • jrl says:

        Rotating a quad-grid through any angle leaves exactly as many lines of sight and access paths.

        • Lloyd says:

          but then the audience would crush standing in the corners to be closer and the whole exam-hall vibe would be lost.

  5. marijane says:

    Am I missing something? Who could have predicted what? The article does not state that the venue was the cause of the spike, rather the nationwide spike in the UK has forced the venue to shut down. It seems like a pretty reasonable setup given what we know about COVID-19 transmission risks.

    • Dude says:

      What's "obvious" is that they shouldn't be trying to rush things at all. Everyone's in such a goddamn hurry to "get back to normal", but no one wants to take the necessary steps (lockdown, testing, quarantine, masking in public) that would most likely get us back to "normal".

      That includes the UK. Everyone wants to act like the problem has already been solved, which just makes things worse. We've lost a year to this virus and won't see a vaccine for another year. Concerts shouldn't be on anyone's list of priorities.

      • Jim says:

        There are already six vaccines in limited use, which means that we just get more side effects, further deteriorating vaccination in general.

        • Dude says:

          Those vaccines are all "potential" and that "limited use" is what (legit) scientists call "trial". Despite what the Annoying Orange would have us believe, proper trial and mass production of any vaccine will take longer than an election cycle (at least a year).

          And if you're trying to suggest that we somehow should make a vaccine just because they have possible side effects... no. Just no. Fuckin'... no:

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