Three of the newest soccer arenas in the world incorporate fabric to meet tensile architecture, bioclimatic facade, and acoustic needs for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
By Jake Kulju
World Cup excitement reached a fever pitch in the summer of 2014 when soccer giant Brazil hosted the global event. The tournament returned to South America for the first time since 1978, and back to Brazil for the first time since 1950. Before a goal was scored or an assist made on the field, the design and construction of three new arenas was making its own kind of sports history. Hi-tech and highly engineered architectural fabrics were incorporated into the structural, climate control, and video-display components of arenas in three of the 12 cities that hosted matches in the 2014 World Cup. Thanks to the inventive and resourceful incorporation of fabric elements into these three arenas, multiuse fabric architecture will likely become more common in the sports arena design-build world.
Multiuse fabrics for a multimedia world
The three Brazilian stadiums relied on flexible composite material designed and manufactured by Serge Ferrari, La Tour du Pin, France, for its ability to be used for multiple applications. From structural integrity to video projection, the fabrics helped create structures that will become models of future stadiums and multi-use facilities around the world.
“Any time our materials are used in a tensile structure, they can become a structural member,” says Steve Fredrickson, sales manager at Serge Ferrari. “They can also be customized to be useful for other applications like climate control, acoustic comfort and multimedia use. With tensile roofs, in particular, our fabrics can be fully integrated into a building. It isn’t just hung or draped, it can actually withstand sun, wind and rain while providing support for the building.”
Serge Ferrari’s commitment to sustainable construction, energy conservation and the responsible use of resources made it a logical choice as the provider of tensioned fabric for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.