To inspire sport’s best, Arup helps to create high-performance venues.

The greatest sports buildings come out of creative partnerships. Arup works with leading architects and the organisers of sporting events worldwide to create venues that perform better.

Our combined design, technical and commercial expertise helps clients to realise their highest aspirations, whether in game-changing visitor experiences or legacy sports facilities.

Reshaping sports venues

In sporting landmarks such as Beijing’s National Aquatics Center (Water Cube) and National Stadium (Bird’s Nest), Munich’s Allianz Arena and Melbourne’s AAMI Park, Arup’s structural design skills have helped reinvent the form of sports venues.

Arup is also helping to deliver the technology that is transforming sports events. We work with developers, clubs and venue operators to plan, build and run smarter sports projects and rich visitor experiences for events, venues, sports parks or even entire sport cities.

We do this with integrated specialist services in IT and communications, lighting, multimedia and broadcasting systems, security, transport and wayfinding, venue management, logistics and operational readiness.

Arup is also equipped to assist with sport’s climatic and environmental challenges, having conducted extensive research into the design of technically complex, comfortable and sustainable stadia. Never content with theory alone, we showed how a venue could be sustainably cooled and zero-carbon in practice with our 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar Showcase, a 500-seat demonstration stadium.

Seizing opportunity

Entrepreneurial ideas are overturning traditional thinking in sports development, and producing financially sustainable facilities. Arup is helping clients to pursue new commercial models, including more flexible venues for sports and entertainment, and sports facilities embedded in mixed-use developments.

The Singapore Sports Hub is a case in point. Arup’s design helped secure investment in the new national stadium, which is being created by the largest sports infrastructure public private partnership (PPP) anywhere. Versatility drove our design. At the Sports Hub’s heart is the world’s first stadium to accommodate football, athletics and cricket in one arena. The stadium itself is built into an entertainment, leisure and retail hub, served by public transport, so that it becomes a year-round commercial and community focus.

Creating legacies

Major sporting events are increasingly seen as a stimulus for investment in regeneration, jobs, housing and transport. So it is essential to design sites for sustained legacy use, long after an event has passed.

Arup’s sports projects are rarely just about building design. We provide masterplanning and site development including energy consulting, infrastructure, waste managementdrainage and of all the technical systems that enable the construction of world-class sporting facilities with enduring value.

We also create concepts that make venues themselves more adaptable. We helped make the Jaca Ice Pavilion, Spain, into an integral part of city life beyond its role in the Junior Euro Olympics. It has 12 modes of operation, from ice hockey stadium to exhibition and concert venue, using demountable seats to vary capacity.



Beijing National Stadium at night, showing reflection in water below. Credit Min Yu Sun.National Stadium (Bird’s Nest)

The most striking structure of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games