The benefits of a modern football stadium are plenty. For clubs to compete at the highest level they must have an arena befitting of their ambitions. Tottenham Hotspur became the envy of the sporting world in 2019 when they opened their futuristic 62,000 seat mega-stadium. With a retractable pitch, a microbrewery, and the longest bar in the UK, the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is now one of the premier sporting venue in London. Set to host NFL games, boxing matches and concerts in addition to the football, the increased revenue generated by the stadium will solidify the club as a European giant for years to come. Football clubs all around the world are working with leading architects and engineers to create impressive new homes, improve current stadiums and regenerate surrounding areas. Here are 5 of the most exciting new stadiums in Europe.
5 of the best new stadiums in Europe
Barcelona (Camp Nou)
The Camp Nou is the biggest football stadium in Europe, and the second biggest in the world, with a capacity of 99,000. That number is set to rise to a whopping 105,000 in 2023. Renovations to the Camp Nou form part of FC Barcelona’s masterplan, a project known as ‘Espai Barca’, an ambitious regeneration of the stadium and its surrounding area.
The project includes a 12,000 seat basketball arena, as well as a 6,000 seat football stadium known as Estadi Johan Cruyff. Espai Barca will cost €600m, with €420m going towards the renovations of the Camp Nou. Improvements include a new tier on one side of the ground, and the reformatting of existing tiers to improve sight-lines. A new roof will incorporate modern video scoreboards, floodlighting and Wi-Fi connection to the historic venue.
Real Madrid (Santiago Bernabéu)
Not to be outdone by FC Barcelona, Real Madrid have themselves begun work on a €400m facelift for the Santiago Bernabéu. The famous stadium will exchange its brutalist concrete exterior for an ultra-modern metal facade, which the club says will bring it more in line with its surroundings.
The renovations will increase the stadium’s footprint by a massive 66,000 square metres, however, the capacity will reduce by one seat, from 80,243 to 80,242. The new and improved Bernabéu will include a retractable roof and a 360-degree video screen. The surrounding area will benefit from a range of new shops, restaurants, and leisure spaces. Scheduled for completion in the autumn of 2021, Los Blancos hope to make the Bernabéu a destination for tourists all year round.
Inter & AC Milan (The Cathedral/The Rings of Milano)
Inter and AC Milan have commissioned two different designs for their new shared stadium. The competing projects will be deliberated upon by local authorities and supporter groups.
The first design, known as The Cathedral, celebrates the rich cultural history of Milan, taking inspiration from The Duomo Cathedral and The Galleria. The other proposal, called The Rings of Milano, incorporates two giant rings intertwined, symbolising the two clubs. Both stadiums have a capacity of 60,000, 20,000 fewer than the San Siro.
Along with a new stadium, the project will include landscaped parks for fans on the site of the old stadium. Some elements of the San Siro will remain to celebrate the heritage of the legendary location. A decision on the winning design is set to be announced by the end of the summer but, whichever design the select, it is clear that it will be among the best new stadiums in Europe.
Roma (Stadio Della Roma)
Another Italian club moving to a new home, A.S. Roma have announced their intention to leave the Stadio Olympico, where they have played since 1953, to move to a new state of the art stadium known as Stadio Della Roma. The new ground, which takes inspiration from the Colosseum, will seat 52,500 spectators.
The stadium has been designed to foster an excellent atmosphere and will have one of world football’s most tightly organised seating bowls. The architects on the project have said that the stadium “pays tribute to Rome’s rich history while embracing the internationally-acclaimed modern and innovative Italian design aesthetic”. The areas surrounding the stadium will be upgraded, with a wide variety of mixed-use developments such as shops, restaurants, cafes, entertainment, and office spaces.
Forest Green Rovers (Eco Park)
Perhaps not a club you’d expect to have one of the best new stadiums in Europe. Forest Green Rovers are showing that you don’t need to be a mega-rich super-club to build a forward-thinking new stadium. Designs for a new 5,000 seat stadium, known as Eco Park, were approved by local authorities in December last year, with the club hoping to complete the project within the next three years.
Rovers’ new stadium is set to become the greenest in the world and will be built almost entirely out of wood. Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, Eco Park places an emphasis on ecological sustainability, with 500 trees being planted to assist in offsetting the stadiums’ carbon footprint. Forest Green Rovers are already an entirely vegan club and Eco Park will see them pull out further ahead as the greenest team in world football.
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