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Real LfgheadWc-Icon-4Architects and engineers involved in the design and construction of stadiums should factor in the following to maximise design efficiency without compromising on the spectator experience:

Location. Select a location that is easily accessible via the city’s major thoroughfares.

Size. Stadiums are usually constructed on plots ranging between 10 and 15 acres given that provision for ample parking space has to be made as well. The capacity of a stadium usually ranges between 30,000 and 50,000 spectators.

Design. During construction, ensure that the stadium’s orientation factors in the angle of the sunlight with respect to the pitch because while designers want to avoid shadows on the field or the sun’s glare for spectators, they also need to ensure sufficient sunlight for viewing and playing.

Pitch. Playingfields usually measure 105 x 68 metres or 125 x 85 metres. Ground maintenance teams should ensure that the pitch is smooth, with adequate watering and drainage systems. In countries such as Pakistan where temperatures are high, alternatives such as artificial turfs are ideal because they do not require sunlight and the stadium can therefore be covered.

Safety. The year2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster in which 96 people lost their lives due to a lack of safety measures. Since then, the concerned authorities recommend stricter safety and security regulations, and builders therefore need to make sure that the prescribed number of safety exits are in place with clear pathways, and that an adequate number of surveillance and first aid centres are located within the premises.

Features. Among other considerations, designers should account for VIP lounges, cafeterias, restrooms, parking lots, flood lights and announcement systems. The number of these amenities varies according to the stadium’s capacity.

– Ibrahim Murad
The writer is an engineer.

First published in the Real Estate Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on June 8, 2014.