Schüco Arena (Bielefelder Alm)
|Clubs||DCS Arminia Bielefeld|
|Inauguration||01.05.1926 (Arminia Bielefeld – SC Victoria Hamburg, 1-5)|
|Renovations||1949, 1954-1958, 1967, 1970, 1996-1999, 2006-2008|
|Record attendance||34,882 (Arminia Bielefeld - 1. FC Kaiserslautern, 1978)|
|Address||Melanchthonstraße 31a, 33615 Bielefeld|
Schüco Arena – stadium description
The stadium in Bielefeld is located in a very attractive neighbourhood, almost at the heart of Bielefeld. But when it was initially opened in 1926, this was a regular pasture. This is most likely to be the reason for “Alm” (Pasture) becoming its nickname and then name. At that time some 2,000 people could gather around the uneven pitch.
it with a bomb during WWII, the stadium didn’t suffer much damage, undergoing a renovation in 1949 and a bigger one, including pitch rotation by 90 degrees in 1954-1958.
Another expansion came in 1967 with a new temporary south stand erected ahead of expected promotion to the Bundesliga. Prior to the club actually advancing in 1970 a similar tubular structure was built along western side of the pitch, four floodlight masts were also built. Another promotion brought one more stand behind northern goal, allowing for crowds of up to 35,000 people to watch games.
But 1980s brought rapid decline. With Heysel tragedy triggering safety standard increase, tubular temporary stands were found unsafe and were dismantled as they began to rust. Capacity fell to 15,000, saved by new east stand, this time permanent.
Another return to the top flight meant further changes. Biggest upgrade to date took place in 1996-99, when three new stands were built one by one, leaving only the east section unchanged. It was dismantled in 2006 and replaced by a €19 million two-tier stand, which closed the bowl.
Apart from Arminia games also various national teams of Germany played their games here and in 2010 the stadium hosted U20 Women’s World Cup. Also major concerts were held here, with the likes of Roxette, Joe Cocker or Elton John on stage.
Since 2004 the stadium is officially named Schüco Arena for commercial reasons.
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