Modern stadium draws on ancient motifs

Can you spot the medieval architectural influences in this Anatolian soccer facility, currently under construction?
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 Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul
Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul

The Turkish architecture practice Bahadir Kul is quite used to overseeing modern infrastructure projects. It already has an ice-rink, an aquarium, a planetarium, and a myriad of stadiums in its portfolio. However, its new Konya City Stadium, currently under construction in the Central Anatolia Region of Turkey, draws from older design traditions.

This building’s most striking element is its cladding, which makes reference to classical Turkish imagery. The firm’s founder, Bahadir Kul, explains that the geometrical shapes, which include triangular, pentagonal and hexagonal forms, can also be seen in Seljuk architecture - a style built in this region between the 11th and 13th centuries.

 

 Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul
Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul

This latter-day tribute is covered in composite panels of steel, sprayed in green and white –the local football team colours. The building was commissioned by Konya Metropolitan Municipality to host events for the 1.1m-strong city, and adheres to UEFA’s criteria – hence the underground heating for the artificial turf.

 

 Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul
Konya City Stadium by Bahadir Kul

Yet this 38,000-seater, concrete and steel stadium will host more than just football. Inside there is also a velodrome, a sports hall, and a swimming pool. For greater insight into other sources inspiring today’s great new buildings sign up for a trial of the Phaidon Atlas, our peerless architecture resource.


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