LUZHNIKI STADIUM, Moscow
Grand Sports Arena
Capacity: 80 788 seats
Renovation: 1979, 1996, 1999, 2007-2008, 2013-2017
Design:SPeeCH, Mosinzhproekt (2013-2017)
Engineer: Metropolis (2013-2017)
Contractor: Mosinzhproect (2013-2017)
The Soviet Union’s mainarena starting from1956 used to be a venue for large domestic and international competitions, including Olympics. Until the 1990s, the roofless stadium could hold just over 100,000 spectators. In 1996, the stadium got extensively renovated, which included the construction of a roof over the stands and the refurbishment of the seating areas, which resulted in a decrease of capacity. It is just that event that became a major milestone in the development of PCF STEELCON, llc,where we have been able to erect 20.000 tons of structural steel within 11 months.
When Russia got awarded the 2018 World Cup, it was soon clear that Luzhniki Stadium would host the Final match and as a result had to undergo a large redevelopment. It hosted its last football match in May 2013 and closed following the IAAF Athletics World Championships in August 2013.
The largest ever reconstruction in the stadium's history took place ahead of the 2018 World Cup. Several variants were under consideration, including demolition of the whole stadium and construction of a futuristic weatherproof arena in its place. Eventually a compromise was found between old and new as Moscow authorities decided to retain the historic walls and existing roof of the stadium. This created a shell under which reconstruction was to take place.
Such move was possible also thanks to FIFA who agreed to lower the minimum capacity requirement from around 90,000 to 80,000. With lower number of seats it became possible to create a brand new seating bowl inside, for the first time in history without a running track. The new layout fits just perfectly, with the uppermost row being placed 37.5m above the field, just under the roof. Eventually almost 81,000 seats were enabled, divided into two large tiers and a thin strip of 102 private boxes between them.
Removal of the old seats began in the summer of 2013 and, following demolition of the old stands, actual construction followed in early 2014. Though the contractor received 42 months to carry out the project, the company did what was possible to deliver it earlier, eventually allowing handover in June, 2017.
Thanks to the stands being moved closer to the field, vast new infrastructure was created underneath the auditorium. The stadium grew to 6 floors and with floor space of 221,000 m2 it became one of the largest in the world. This created room for extra facilities, like VIP parking sites under north and south stands, which in turn helped to preserve the green realm around the stadium itself instead of covering it with asphalt.
Change in seating layout forced a change of the roof itself. While all of the old structure was preserved, additional 7,000 m2 of translucent sheets were created around the inner edges to properly protect fans in new front rows. The whole roof received new cladding with lighting installed within it, which makes Luzhniki's roof the largest video screen in Moscow.
Extension of the roof also prompted a change in the field type. Instead of natural (2008-2013), the world's most modern hybrid turf was installed to withstand limited ventilation and sunlight access, as well as harsh Moscow winters.