Germany: Will Freiburg build a stadium with wood?

source: Badische-Zeitung.de

Germany: Will Freiburg build a stadium with wood? The project has been backed by local residents, but now a major update is being analysed. The new home ground for SC Freiburg might end up built largely with wood.

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In February this year citizens of Freiburg in southern Germany gave their support for a new stadium in referendum. Key guidelines are the capacity of 35,000, delivery around 2019 and budget of €70 million. Local authorities are expected to stick to those points.

One major difference that surfaced back in May is for the stadium to be built using largely wood. This proposal came from local Green Party members and was widely accepted as interesting. And rightly so, because wood has large identity meaning for the region of Black Forest. Local Forestry Department is in favour and city planning committee is now looking into the feasibility of such a plan.

Stadion FreiburgThis is an unofficial vision of the stadium created back in 2014 and using wood in the outer cladding © Daniel Ebermann

Recent months saw a series of examinations as to what can be built with wood. For obvious reasons, main structures of the grandstands and roof will not be able to stand without the use of steel and/or concrete. However cases of extensive use in secondary structures aren’t uncommon, to name just Allianz Riviera, Synot Tip Arena or Letzigrund, all of which have wood as part of their roof structure/cladding.

Stadion FreiburgThis is an unofficial vision of the stadium created back in 2014 and using wood in the outer cladding © Daniel Ebermann

The outcome of Freiburg’s analysis should be presented in December or January. It won’t be a complete design, rather a feasibility study. Any use of wood will depend on its impact on cost and time frame of the project. Keeping in line with guidelines set for the referendum is crucial.

Municipal subsidiary will be established in 2016 and will run the project through design and construction phases. At this point it’s not clear whether a competition (design) and tender (construction) will be launched separately or only one “design + build” scheme.

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