Forest Green Rovers FC has shortlisted nine stadium designs from almost 50 entries by architects based around the world in a competition to create the club’s new home.
Architectural firms from France, Sweden, Germany and the United States, as well as many leading and up-and-coming firms from around Britain, entered the competition to design an innovative new 5,000-capacity stadium for Forest Green Rovers (FGR) that will be the centrepiece of the GBP£100m Eco Park development – a 100 acre sports and green technology business park proposal beside junction 13 of the M5 in Gloucestershire.
The shortlisted architects are:
- AFL Architects
- DP Architects
- George King Architects
- Gianni Botsford Architects
- Glenn Howells Architects
- Richard Kroeker
- Studio M12
- Zaha Hadid Architects
Dale Vince, founder of Ecotricity and Forest Green Rovers Chairman, said:
We originally said we’d draw up a shortlist of eight entries, but we’ve had such a fantastic range of designs from across the world that we’ve had to squeeze an extra one in.
The shortlisted architects will now work up their designs in more depth, and I’m very excited to see what comes next.
From the nine shortlisted entries, FGR will select two finalists, who will be paid an honorarium and produce a scale model – the winning design will be unveiled in September.
Half of Eco Park will consist of state-of-the-art sporting facilities, including the new stadium, grass and all-weather training pitches, publicly accessible multi-disciplinary facilities, and a sports science hub.
The other half will comprise a green technology business park with sustainably built commercial offices and light industrial units, giving Eco Park the potential to create up to 4,000 jobs, including room for the continued expansion of green energy company Ecotricity, who have submitted the overall proposal and who are already the biggest employer in Stroud with 700 people located across four sites.
The proposal will also see the development of a nature reserve on the site, a potential public transport hub, including a Stroud Park and Ride, as well as help with the restoration of the Stroudwater canal.
The club appointed Frank Whittle Partnership (FWP), one of the UK’s leading sports stadia experts, to oversee the competition.
The Brief challenges architects to design a winning entry that will be “bold and innovative and designed to the highest architectural and sustainability standards”, as well as “sustainable and future proof”.
The competition is being held in three stages – after the initial entries, the judges will select a shortlist of eight designers, who’ll be asked to produce concepts. From these, FGR will select two finalists, who will be paid an honorarium – and they will work up their ideas in further detail, including the production of a scale model. The winning design will be unveiled in September.