Construction on a colossal, flower-shaped stadium in Guangzhou, China has kicked off. Built for Chinese professional soccer team, Guangzhou Evergrande, the $1.7 billion stadium will host in excess of 100,000 spectators, making it the world’s largest stadium dedicated to soccer upon completion.
This bold stadium will eclipse the size of Barcelona’s Camp Nou stadium, which is currently the largest stadium built specifically for soccer, with a capacity at 99,354. Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the project was commenced shortly after China lifted its social distancing restrictions in order to meet the 2022 completion date. The stadium is set to host events for the 2023 Asian Cup.
The new stadium is funded by the Evergrande Group, the largest real estate company in China and the owner of Guangzhou Evergrande. Eight different designs for the project were submitted before Evergrande selected architect Hasan Syed, design director in Gensler’s Shanghai office. The final design recalls the shape of a lotus flower, which references Guangzhou’s moniker, “Flower City”.
According to Designboom, the stadium is part of China’s plans to bolster the country’s soccer infrastructure, with hopes to make China more competitive on the international stage. The development team also announced that it will construct an additional two stadiums with capacities of 80,000 elsewhere in the country, according to Construction Dive.