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Floating Amber: PGE Arena Gdansk

The stadium was built for the 2012 European Football Championships in Poland. It is oriented towards two local typologies: Its shape and colour emulate the locally found amber. The architecture seems smoothed and rounded from water, sand and wind. A roof made of polycarbonate lends transparency, lightness and amber luminosity to the façade.

Architects: RKW Rhode Kellermann Wawrowsky, in cooperation with RKW Polska and HPP Hentrich Petschnigg & Partner
Structural Planning: B+G Ingenieure Bollinger and Grohmann
Location: Pokolen Lechii Gdansk, 80-560 / Gdansk, Poland

The second aspect reflects the local shipbuilding industry as an important cultural site for modern Poland as well as the Solidarnosc movement. Consequently, the filigree supporting structure of the arena is reminiscent of a ship‘s hull with its ribs and planking.

The result is a multi-purpose arena fully conforming to UEFA criteria, which not only for the duration of the EURO 2012 provided a unique sports facility by the Baltic Sea, but which, thanks to its many features and accessibility, will establish itself in the long term as an ideal location for concerts and other events as well as for the local football team Lechia Gdansk.

The 2013 IOC / IAKS Award jury liked the “approach of this international-standard football stadium making use of local colours. The reference to amber from the nearby Baltic Sea is unparalleled on this huge scale. The honey-coloured light creates a unique atmosphere in this large stadium and gives it a friendly identity. This football stadium also meets the best modern standards in terms of ease of access and egress for spectators to and from every level. The PGE Arena is exemplary in particular with regard to its provision for visually impaired spectators. They are offered live commentary to enhance the match day experience. A tactile model of the stadium for information and orientation and a ‘touch tour‘ of the stadium is also available.”

Project data

Client/Operator: Biuro Inwestycji Euro Gdansk 2012 Sp. Z.O.O.
Size of site: 339,177 m²
Activity/Competition area: 22,533 m²
Spectator facilities: 45,000
Start of construction: 5/2009
Commissioning: 7/2011
Construction costs: Euro 146.6 million
Operating costs in 2012: Euro 2.4 million
Number of athletes/users in 2012: 1.211
Number of spectators in 2012: 581.509

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