The objective of the newly-built Allianz Riviera Stadium in Nice, France, by international design practice Wilmotte & Associés, goes beyond the simple yearning to build a visually-appealing sports facility.
Largely inspired by a flying bird, the stadium’s overall shape essentially reflects the aim of reinforcing the surrounding urban fabric. Likewise, shifting certain services underground, for instance parking facilities, allows the creation of generous green spaces connecting the building to the rest of the Saint-Isidore neighbourhood.
Prompted by explicit design intentions in compliance with sustainable development principles, the designers investigate, through an innovative skin, the notion of immateriality as an actual tectonic quality. The project comprises a multifunctional stadium with a seating capacity of 35.000, the National Sports Museum, 29.000 m² of completely integrated shops (shops are located under the esplanade of the stadium, the museum nestles in the North tribune), 1.300 parking spaces, of which 800 are underground and a three hectare landscaped park at ground level.
The frame of the stadium is made up of a tri-dimensional wood-steel frame covered with a PVC and ETFE tensile fabric, and is equipped with photovoltaic panels.
While maintaining a financially-responsible and low-carbon approach to design, the architects were able to develop a complex undulating space-frame that combines optimal lightness with solidity. Perhaps the most noteworthy features of this cutting-edge architectural feat are the extensive solar photovoltaic panel structure, the rainwater collection system and the highly-efficient wind-driven ventilation system, making the Allianz Riviera one of the first EnergyPlus stadiums.
Project: Allianz Riviera Stadium
Location: Saint Isidore, Nice, France
Architect: Wilmotte & Associés , Paris, France
Technical info: PVC/ETFE membrane
Picture credits: Milène Servelle and Serge Demailly, Wilmotte & Associés