Stade Armand-Cesari

Capacity16 500
Country France
ClubsSC Bastia
CategoryDesign awaiting implementation
Cost€15.5 M ($16.6 M)
Design A+ Architecture


Stade Armand-Cesari – design description

What does Stade Armand-Cesari look like?

Stade Armand-Cesari was opened on October 16, 1932 (originally as Stade du Docteur Luciani). The facility is located in Furiani, a southern suburb of Bastia, Corsica, and its main users are the footballers of SC Bastia. The capacity of the stadium is 16,048 spectators.

The stadium had the opportunity to host, among other things, the first leg of the 1978 UEFA Cup final, in which SC Bastia played against PSV Eindhoven. The most famous event, however, took place on May 5, 1992, when the hosts were to face Olympique Marseille in the French Cup semi-final.

Due to the high level of interest, a temporary stand for nearly 10,000 spectators was built on the north side. The stand had to be built in a very short period of time, which led to tragic failures. Before the match, the structure filled with fans collapsed, resulting in the deaths of 18 people and the injuries of more than 2,300.

After the tragedy, the stadium was thoroughly modernized. In 1994, a new stand behind the eastern goal was built, followed in 1997 by a new main (northern) stand, in 2001 the stand behind the western goal and in 2011 the southern stand. In this way, practically the entire facility was rebuilt.

Over time, however, the condition of the arena began to deteriorate. Among other things, the media published pictures showing the upholstery of the seats in the VIP stand being torn apart. Strong winds were also a problem. In January 2022, the local authorities launched a consultation on further upgrading the stadium.

When did the concept for the modernisation of Stade Armand-Cesari emerge?

After a few months of consultation, the main ideas for further work were established and an architectural concept competition was launched. On July 8, 2022, three firms were identified to compete to create the best vision: Michel Remon et Associés, A+ Architecture and Origin Architecture.

On November 26, 2022, at Stade Armand-Cesari, the president of Bastia agglomeration community, Louis Pozzo di Borgo, presented the winning concept. Other senior representatives of the local and regional authorities were also present at the ceremony. The author of the selected concept was studio A+ Architecture.

What are the plans for the modernisation of Stade Armand-Cesari?

The concept for the modernisation of Stade Armand-Cesari involves rebuilding the stand behind the east goal, roofing both stands behind the goals and extending the roof over the north and south stands to make the auditorium fully covered. The facility is also to receive a façade that, in addition to its decorative value, will protect against wind gusts.

Additional spaces will be created in the stadium, including for a museum and restaurant in the north stand and a new VIP area in the south stand. The floodlighting masts will be removed and their role taken over by spotlights, which will be located in the canopy. After modernisation, the facility will have a more coherent appearance, its standard and the comfort of visitors will be improved. The capacity of the stands will remain relatively the same and will reach 16,500 spectators.

When will Stade Armand-Cesari be upgraded?

It is assumed that the work will start in 2024 and will take two years. Initially, the cost to complete the investment was estimated at €12 million, but this was later reported to have risen to €15.5 million. Much of the money is to come from the government's Transformation, Innovation and Investment Plan for Corsica (PTIC), with the rest of the cost to be borne by the Corsican authorities and the Bastia agglomeration community.