Qatar inaugurates first stadium for 2022 World Cup

Al Janoub Stadium has been opened in Qatar, the first of the FIFA World Cup 2022 venues to be unveiled.

Located in Al Wakrah, 23km south of Doha, the venue will host group and quarter final matches of the tournament. 

Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) and Aecom, the 40,000-capacity ground will be reduced to 20,000 following the World Cup, when it will become the home ground of Al Wakrah, part of the Qatar Stars national league. 

The temporary seating is demountable and after the competition will be donated to a developing country that lack sporting infrastructure.

Al Janoub Stadium contains a retractable roof designed by Schlaich Bergermann Partner and a seating bowl cooling system. ZHA says passive design principles and wind tunnel mapping were used to maximise player and spectator comfort.

It adds that the roof operates like a sail to cover the pitch, with a design inspired by the hulls dhows turned upside-down and huddled together to provide shade and shelter.

The image of the dhow is also used as a reference in the large overhang of the stadium’s eaves that incorporate strips of metal cladding reminiscent of the timber structures used in the boat.

The stadium was designed in tandem with the surrounding development, and sits at the heart of an urban extension to Al Wakrah. 

Images courtesy of Hufton+Crow/Zaha Hadid Architects

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