Hamburg-based practice gmp architekten has designed and completed the ‘Bao’an Stadium’ located in Shenzen, China. The stadium is designed as an athletics stadium holding 40,000 spectators. During the 2011 Universiade, it is being used for football matches.
The extensive bamboo forests of southern China were the inspiration for the design. The bamboo look serves two purposes. It reflects the character of the region, and thus creates identity. And it serves as a structural concept for both the load-bearing frame of the stadium stands and the supports for the wide-span roof structure.
The outermost part of the stadium unites façade, structure and overarching architectural theme in a single feature. The natural look of the bamboo forest, together with the interplay of light and shadow between the trunks, is interpreted structurally through rows of slender steel supports, as outsize, abstract versions of the bamboo shape.
The stadium is being built in the immediate vicinity of a sports arena and swimming bath, which have already established an east-west axis.