Diving into the design of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 stadiums–Part II

Last week, Construction Canada covered the design of four FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 stadiums, which can be accessed here. Here is a look at the remaining four FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 stadiums from a design and architectural perspective.

Al Bayt Stadium

Located near an oasis, the Al Bayt Stadium is inspired by and named after the historic bayt al sha’ar tents traditionally used in Qatar and across the region. The architecture and engineering firm Dar Al-Handasah provided the detailed design of this 60,000-capacity venue.

Structurally, the venue consists of two separate entities: the bowl and the tent. The bowl houses three basements, a ground floor, three upper floors, and separate seating areas. The tent, meanwhile, is composed of tensile fabric stretched across steel cables, and steel trusses with concrete piers, equally spaced at the periphery of the tent, serving as anchor blocks for the tieback cables. Underground tunnels in the basements are used as vehicular access and means of egress. The construction used advanced and recyclable materials and was recognized by the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS).

Lusail Stadium

Conceptualized by Foster + Partners, Lusail Stadium, in the city of Lusail, responds to the climatic and cultural heritage of Qatar. The seating bowl is expressed externally as a burnished golden vessel, which sparkles against the sunlight. The facade features triangular openings, visually reinforcing the bowl’s structural diagrid and forming a perforated screen to provide shade and filter dappled light onto the internal concourses. The high-performance facades and an innovative roof design reduce the stadium’s energy consumption. Outdoor cooling technologies are also used to maximize comfort within the open-air stadium. It has achieved a five-star rating under the GSAS.

The ‘spoke-wheel’ cable net roof with the diameter of 307 m (1007 ft), one of the world’s largest tensile cable-net roof in a stadium, brings environmental comfort while unifying the entire stadium under a single envelope. Its outer compression ring is connected to a central tension ring by a complex cable system. This method creates a wide-expanse roof without the need for supporting columns.

Khalifa International Stadium

Dar Al-Handasah (Dar) was tasked with designing and supervising the expansion of the Khalifa Stadium’s East Stand, while maintaining the architectural integrity of this national icon, particularly its signature lighting arch, which spans the entire facility, and its west grandstand with the arched roof structure.

Dar’s scope also included designing and installing innovative cooling solutions and technologies that employ 40 per cent less energy to provide a cool and comfortable environment in the bleachers and on the playfield. A huge new roof canopy was also installed to provide shade for all spectators and maintain a comfortable temperature for spectators and athletes.

Dar also led the design of landscaping, and all electromechanical, infrastructure, and solid waste management systems.

Al Janoub Stadium

A collaboration principally between Zaha Hadid Architects and Aecom, the Al Janoub Stadium is built as a venue capable of being downsized following the World Cup. Located in the coastal city of Al Wakrah, the design of the roof reflects an abstract assortment of inverted hulls of the traditional dhow boats used in the region. Featuring pleated fabric and cables, the roof acts as a shield to protect from adversely hot weather, while the envelope of the stadium, based on passive design principles, coupled with computer modelling and wind testing, creates an interior space which prioritizes occupant comfort. The major volume of the facade is devoted to the dhow-inspired system of roofs, which sits atop a lower level featuring intricately patterned walls, evoking traditional Qatari imagery.

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  1. This article feels a little tone deaf given that more than 6,500 migrant workers have died in Qatar since it won the right to host the World Cup in 2010, of which at least 400-500 of those died on construction projects relating to FIFA infrastructure and facilities, including these stadiums. While the design of these stadiums may be remarkable, the approach to construction safety and lack of respect for human rights should be condemned. This was a missed opportunity on the part of Construction Canada to address this issue and call on Quatar and similar nations to do better.

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