The club from Baden-Württemberg relocated to the new ground after almost 67 years at Schwarzwald-Stadion. The opening was delayed by more than a year due to technical flaws and the coronavirus pandemic.
Make it in time for the RB Leipzig game
On October 7, SC Freiburg inaugurated its new facility with a friendly match against St. Pauli (3-0). The encounter from the height of stands was watched by 15,000 spectators. The game was not without a few mishaps as in the second half the lights went out for a moment and the condition of the pitch left a lot to be desired.
Fortunately, the floodlights were brought into service and the day after works related to the replacement of the turf began. Time is short, because on October 16 the first Bundesliga fixture will take place in the new arena against RB Leipzig. The new home of the Breisgau Brazilians is to seat 34,700 people and its construction price tag was € 76.5 million.
© Klaus Polkowski, Freiburg
Europa-Park Stadion is almost 10,000 seats larger than the old venue. It gives 1000 additional business seats and should make it possible to attract up to 200 new sponsors. It is very likely that apart from commercial name of the facility, there will be an alternative. Some fans suggest Mooswaldstadion.
Unique roof supports
The ground is situated in the Brühl district in the north-west of Freiburg. The city airport is located in close proximity to the arena. Before construction began, 40 reports were prepared, 25 potential sites were examined and only the referendum in 2015 paved the way for the commencement of works. Overall, the planning of the stadium took almost 11 years.
The construction officially began with the cornerstone laying ceremony on March 29, 2019, although preparatory works started in November 2018. According to the original schedule, the venue was supposed to be completed in August 2020, however, it was put into use more than a year from that date.
A rectangular building is a real eye-catcher with its diagonal steel roof supports that carry roof weight to the outside. About 170 LED floodlights are built into the canopy and the stadium is only 25 metres tall at its highest point, which was imposed by the proximity of the airport.
Solar power plant in 2022
Inside, the ground impresses with its compactness, steep stands and short distance to the playing field. The heart of the arena is the single-tier south stand, one of a kind because the rest of the stadium consists of two-tier structures.
The aforementioned stand is the territory for the club's most ardent fans, who have 9,000 standing places at their disposal. At the northeastern end, there is room for 3,500 travelling fans. The VIP zone, which can accommodate up to 2,000 people, is located on the west stand.
Additionally, disabled fans have 144 places, a car park for 2,100 vehicles has been created for drivers, and cyclists have 3,700 spots at their disposal. By 2022, the largest solar power plant in the world will be built on the rooftop, which is to cover most of the energy demand on match day.
Author: Tomasz Sobura