The stadium boom in China is in full swing. Construction in Shantou, where the 2021 Asian Youth Games arena is being built, has entered its final phase. The facility is located near the shores of the South China Sea.
Completion of works next month
The third edition of the Asian Youth Games will be held in November this year. The stadium in Shantou is to be the main arena of the event, where the opening and closing ceremonies will take place. The venue with a capacity of 22,000 seats is to be completed on May 31.
Construction carried out by China Construction Eighth Engineering Division Corp. started on July 31, 2019. According to information from 2019, the creation of the stadium with a gymnastics hall and a conference centre is to amount to CNY 1.74 billion (€ 220 million).
At the design stage, it was necessary to take into account the proximity of the sea (50 metres from the coast), frequent typhoons in this region of China, as well as erosion by salt in the atmosphere. Therefore, it was necessary to use appropriate stainless steel materials and design solutions increasing resistance to weather conditions.
Construction has been suspended several times due to three typhoons and the coronavirus pandemic. However, the original deadline for commissioning the investment is to be met, as 1,500 people work 3 shifts on the site.
At this point, the assembly of the roof is slowly coming to an end, which was an extremely precise undertaking, as the largest margin of error was only 8 millimetres. Work on the roof began on July 12 last year with the installation of the largest truss. On August 30, the main steel structure of the stadium was completed.
Prefabricated stands, the assembly of which started in November, are ready. Also that month, the process of lifting the roof started. After May 31, minor works related to fire protection, water and electricity installations are planned.
What we know about stadium in Shantou?
The facility is being built in the Tagangwei district, located in the port city of Shantou, which is part of Guangdong Province. All of the masterplan revolves around land reclaimed from the sea, over 600 hectares in total.
The venue is part of the first phase of the East Campus of Shantou University and the Asian Youth Conference Venue Project, which also includes the creation of an 8,000-seat gymnastics hall, a conference centre, a training ground and an outdoor event platform.
Construction in the wetland was quite a challenge. The laying of the foundations of the stadium and the nearby hall was preceded by driving 2,768 pipe piles. The most iconic element of Asian Youth Games Stadium is the roof.
The designer himself describes it as "dancing waves", which is a natural reference to the influence of the sea on the city and its inhabitants. Moreover, we know that the facility will have two-story stands and an athletics track around the pitch.
The roofs of the stadium, hall and conference centre are connected with each other and the whole is one structure. The largest arch truss is 120 metres long and weighs 1,000 tons. It was raised in batches to a height exceeding 30 metres at the highest point. Additionally, the roof has 11 structural and decorative layers
The stadium has a construction area of 46 600 square metres and four overground storeys. The conference centre with a building area of 19,100 square metres will accommodate 1,000 people in the main hall. After the Asian Youth Games, the venue is to be used mainly for athletics events.
Author: Tomasz Sobura