Published December 17, 2008
Doha, Qatar’s capital city, is building one of the most unusual and innovative new stadia the world has ever seen.
Dubbed the Wall, this will be the world’s first underground football stadium. It will not be only the first such underground sport facility but it will also be the first stadium with natural or open air-conditioning.
Why did Qatar’s leaders decide to build the stadium underground?
The weather in Qatar is not very pleasant and it definitely is not welcoming to footballers or sport fans. The underground location will make the desert conditions more bearable because the summer temperatures outside the stadium may reach 50º C. The underground concept will also save huge sums of money that would be otherwise necessary to pay for air-conditioning.
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The facility was designed by MZ & Partners Architects. It will have enough seats for 11,000 spectators and no light towers, no floodlights. The lights will be incorporated within the stadium’s structure itself. The facility will be easily accessible by 7 roads.
The architects have also come with up an idea to create the main tribune as a wall that will rise high above the stadium. From the shape of this stadium and its tribune, the complex has been nicknamed the “Laptop”. Estimated to cost US$20 million, the stadium will ready in 2010.
As a country with the highest GDP per capita in the Arab World, Qatar would like to host the World Cup in 2018 in this stadium but there are doubts that the capacity of the “Laptop” will be sufficient for such an event.