The project brief: to design and build a stadium in the Northland city of Whangarei, New Zealand, with a seating capacity of more than 3,000, the majority under cover. In addition, the client required corporate boxes and hospitality areas sheltered from the elements.
The project purpose: to create a stadium that could be used for sporting and concert events as part of a major redevelopment of Okara Park in Whangarei that would introduce significant sports activity in the area via a regional events center incorporating new grandstands and terraces to accommodate up to 25,000 people.
A tension membrane roof was a cost-effective solution for covering the stadium because it could be fabricated and installed more quickly than traditional construction methods and materials. Additionally, fabric offered beautiful aesthetics and high translucency.
Built under a tight time frame and budget, the stadium uses a concrete frame substructure topped by a cantilevered lightweight steel superstructure that is unobtrusive to the spectators. The 100 meter-long building is slightly curved to maximize the angle of spectator view, emphasizing the natural amphitheater of Okara Park, making the seating surprisingly intimate and in close proximity to the playing field.