Project team:

Client: Narodowe Centrum Sportu Sp. z o.o.
Architects: gmp, von Gerkan, Mark + Partner, Hamburg/D
Concept design: Volkwin Marg and Hubert Nienhoff, in cooperation with Markus Pfisterer
Project management: Markus Pfisterer, Martin Hakiel
Project management, roof: Martin Glass
Concept design team: Stephanie Eichelmann, Lars Laubenthal, Fariborz Rahimi-Nedjat
Realisation team: Carsten Borucki, Lena Brögger, Katarzyna Ciruk, Stefanie Eichelmann, Alberto Franco Flores, Ruthie Gould, Patrick
Klügel, Monika Kwiatkowski, Lars Laubenthal, Ausias José Lobatón Ortega, Fariborz Rahimi-Nedjat, Nikolai Reich, Stefan Sass, Florian
Schwarthoff, Sonia Taborda, Semra Ugur
Project architects: J.S.K Architekci Sp. z o.o., Warsaw/PL
Support structure planning roof and facade: Schlaich Bergermann und Partner, Stuttgart/D; Knut Göppert, Knut Stockhusen and Lorenz Haspel
Team: Tiago Carvalho, Ulrich Dillmann, Hansmartin Fritz, Alberto Goosen, Sebastian Grotz, Stefan Justiz, Roman Kemmler, Christoph Paech, Bernd Ruhnke, Klaus Straub, Cornelia Striegan, Andrzej Winkler

05. Jan 2013

Standing proud
National stadium in Warsaw/PL

Text: Joachim Ritter, Thomas Müller
Photos: Marcus Bredt, Florian Licht, Lichtvision

The UEFA European Football Championship 2012 came and went in next to no time. For some the event was a huge success, for the rest less so, as was to be expected. The host countries are always left with some new architecture and one or more new stadiums. In that regard, Poland and the Ukraine can also consider themselves winners. They have gained new stadiums that demonstrate visionary lighting design. The lighting for the new stadium in Warsaw was even designed by a team of designers whose name is already an indication of future-oriented planning…

If you read the design brief for any architectural project, you will find that in most cases the architect is able to communicate his message by describing in simple terms the forms, the materials and the surfaces he envisages for the structure in question. This can work very well, but as apiece of descriptive text tends to sound sober and unemotional. This kind of approach is not really appropriate when it comes to stadiums. How can a stadium express the kind of excitement or whirlwind of emotions it is host to through its forms and structural design alone? This is probably why stadiums are often named after famous players or coaches– unless the sports arena is obliged to promote a sponsor. In Germany and Austria, respectively, the names Fritz Walter and Ernst Happel come to mind. Their names are associated with a specific philosophy and success in the sports world, an important element for attracting the crowds into the stadiums. Yes, sport is closely linked with enthusiasm and excitement, from sheer elation to utter disappointment, and with a certain element of show busi-ness. And the fact that fans frequently let off flares in the stands clearly shows that light has something to do with channelling emotions. Such actions are not necessarily an expression of aggression or riotous behaviour, but rather of unbounded joy at what is happening on the pitch. Does it not make sense to channel these emotions through cleverly controlled lighting schemes? An international design competition held in 2007 invited architects to submit design proposals for a new National Stadium for Poland in Warsaw. The winning firm, Gerkan, Marg und Partner from Hamburg/D collaborated with J.S.K. Architekci from Warsaw/PL and Schlaich Berger-mann and Partners from Stuttgart/D. The new stadium is located on the site of the Dziesiciolecia Stadium (10th Anniversary Stadium), which was originally built in 1955 using the rubble from buildings destroyed during the Second World War. The revitalisation of this area as a sports venue with the “new” National Stadium is a real milestone, not only for Warsaw, but for the development of the national identity of the entire country. […]


The full version of the article can be found in PLD No. 85.

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