Each of them weighs 540 tons and will give support to one-of-a-kind dome hovering above 40,000 fans during the World Cup. Likened to a vagina in mainstream media, this stadium will become a landmark for Qatar and beyond.
Earlier this week a symbolic moment happened in Al Wakrah, small town just south of Doha. With part of the seating bowl ready, two massive steel trusses were installed at Al Wakrah Stadium, one behind every goal.
Each of the hockey-stick-shaped elements is almost 30 meters long and weighs 540 tons. The roof steel elements for the columns originated in China and were fabricated in Italy, later shipped to Qatar.
The two columns will now lend support to what will eventually become a self-supporting dome weighing some 7,000 tons. In order to put the first elements in place, two 600-ton crawler cranes were used.
Nicknamed the “vagina stadium” back in 2013, Al Wakrah Stadium became the first ever stadium to be designed by Zaha Hadid and go under construction. And while the vaginal association is silly to say the least, it speaks of how unique this structure will be.
Indeed, there hasn't been any dome shaped that way as of yet and during final design work a retractable roof over the field was added to the scheme, which means cooling the stadium should become easier than planned before.
The €587-million stadium has been under construction since last year and should be ready for opening in 2018. It will host just over 40,000 people during the World Cup and after 2022 almost all upper sections will be removed and transferred to a different stadium.