S TA DIUM INNOVAT ION
Spurs’ new White Hart Lane stadium will offer a complete leisure experience
REIMAGINING STADIUMS Major sports venues are increasingly becoming leisure destinations, as operators aim for financial viability. Tom Walker looks at two major trends shaping stadium development – fan-centric technology and sustainable design
n an age of commercialised sport, stadiums
pitch will be used for NFL games as well as music
and other major venues are no longer simply
concerts, to protect the integrity of the grass surface.
a stage for the action to take place on. With
“We believe our new stadium will redefine sports and
terms such as ‘multi-use’, ‘fan-centric’ and
entertainment experiences,” says Daniel Levy, chair of
‘environmentally friendly’ peppering project
Tottenham Hotspur. “We’ve travelled to some of the best
briefs, modern sports facilities are as much
venues in the world to ensure no stone is left unturned
revenue generators as the sports that they
in order to deliver the best visitor experiences.”
hold. As a result, technology, sustainable design and
While Spurs might provide us with the perfect
improved guest services now play a crucial role in the
case study of a modern stadium, it’s not the only
design and management of major venues. Take the new White Hart Lane stadium, the future home of Tottenham Hotspur FC, currently under
venue implementing technology and sustainability. How then, are modern venues tackling the two main trends – sustainability and a fan-centric approach?
construction in North London, UK. Offering fans heated
seats with built-in USB ports, superfast broadband,
a fromagerie, microbrewery and a Michelin-starred
In the past decade, environmentally-friendly operations
restaurant, the venue is set to be more a complete
and practices have gone from a marginal concern to
leisure destination than a simple football stadium.
a major consideration in sports venue management.
As for the sport itself, the stadium will also take
Organisations – such as the Green Sports Alliance
a revolutionary approach to creating a truly multi-
(GSA) – have been set up to offer guidance and support
use venue. A natural grass pitch will sit directly
for the sector, and there is now an understanding that
above an artificial one, making it the first of its
‘sustainable stadium’ equals ‘economically efficient’.
kind to have two pitches inside the same bowl.
The trend towards sustainable building practices is
The fully retractable grass surface will be used for
encouraging construction companies and architects to
Spurs’ Premier League matches, while the artificial
look for more innovative ways to use recycled materials
ISSUE 135 JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018