The World’s First Underground Stadium

By: Daryl | September 23rd, 2008

Seems to me that the Middle East is the future of football. Man City’s new Abu Dhabi based owners now making some very sensible noises – less about buying C-Ron and more about faith in Mark Hughes and long term investment in the youth academy – which is good news for everyone concerned (including Man City if you ask me).

And over in Doha, Qatar this incredible new stadium is being built for the Al-Ahli team to play in (not to be confused with the Egyptian Al-Ahli). Designed by MZ & Partners, it’s called “The Wall”, and will apparently be the world’s first underground stadium: open-air but air-conditioned. Welcome to the future kids.

I don’t know much about architecture, but I have a friend who does and they tell me that form should follow function. Because it gets damn hot in Doha, stadiums need to be built cool. And where’s cooler than underground? The only aboveground feature is the upper part of the main stand, which is why the stadium has already been nicknamed “The Laptop”.

Here’s what the stadium will look like from above ground:

From overhead:

And, crucially, from inside:

Actually that looks like it’s from inside a corporate box. If you ever manage to actually see the inside of a corporate box in Qatar for realsies then congratulations: you are extremely wealthy.

Apparently the stadium will open in 2010 and seat just 11,000, which makes Qatar’s possible 2018 World Cup bid a bit of a longshot (unless it’s possible to expand, which I’ll bet it is).

But I’m still oddly excited by this, if only because I’m completely sick of seeing English Premier League stadiums that all look more or less identical. Same design, different colour paint. If Middle Eastern money is the future of the Premier League, then maybe we’ll eventually see some of this innovative design come to England.

Want to build your own? Here are the plans: (via SkyscraperCity Forums)

[via Times Online]

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Category Category: World Football


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  • wis

    nice ide im actully from the middle east but i live in austrlia i barek for the ahli and i think wat they done must be done in the premier league

  • PGE Park in Portland, Oregon is also underground; or at least below the street level:

  • Guest

    definitely cool, very functional, unless there is a massive flood and no cover..oops... Is the opening retractable, or close able? Base Jumping? chi money is right, Blackysky, is from Canada.

  • Chi Money

    actually, this works in every way. I am sure they have figured out a way to grow the grass, or use artificial. They DO have the population to fill this, they just need to actually get peeps to the games. The Form is nice, you cannot say it does not work, even if you don't like it. Function is achieved, since it looks like it will be a FUNCTIONing stadium. And Blackysky, your English is f*cking horrible. Oh, I see you're from Canada

  • great post! very interesting! it's amazing and beautiful stadium.

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