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The Milwaukee Bucks have released an updated set of renderings for the team’s new multi-purpose arena in downtown Milwaukee. These images reflect the plans submitted for the final stage of the design approval process with the city and local public officials before construction on the new arena can begin this summer.

The images of the new multi-purpose venue and entertainment district illustrate the ambitious new development vision of Bucks ownership to transform 30-acres of mostly vacant land into a vibrant neighbourhood activated by sports, entertainment, residential and office uses. The arena site, located between N. Fourth Street and N. Sixth Street from W. Highland Ave. to W. Juneau Ave., will seamlessly link with active development on all sides, including Old World Third Street, Schlitz Park, The Brewery, the Milwaukee riverfront, Water Street and the Wisconsin Center.

Bucks President, Peter Feigin, said:

We’re just months away from seeing the new home of the Milwaukee Bucks and our collective efforts to revitalize Milwaukee begin to move from vision to reality. These plans reflect the commitment of our ownership, generosity of Senator Kohl and historic collaboration with public officials to build a world-class sports and entertainment destination in the heart of downtown Milwaukee. We look forward to working closely with public officials and the entire community over the next several months to finalise the design and construction plans so that we can begin to create long-lasting jobs and economic opportunity in Milwaukee.

In addition to serving as the home of the Milwaukee Bucks basketball team, the 714,000sqft Populous-designed arena will host countless sports and entertainment events, as well as anchor a new entertainment district that hopes to serve as a catalyst for a ripple effect that will transform downtown Milwaukee.

The Bucks tapped Populous last year to lead a group of prominent global, national and local architects, including Wisconsin-based firms Eppstein Uhen and HNTB for the new arena and masterplan of the entire development.

The Populous-led design team envisions, among other features, an exterior design for the new arena inspired by Milwaukee’s proud architectural heritage and the region’s natural environment. Nodes of glass highlighting activity within punctuate a hand-crafted zinc patina exterior.

The arena design features an intimate bowl optimised for basketball viewing with the majority of the seats in the lower level closer to the action, while still providing the flexibility to host hockey games, end stage and centre stage concerts, family shows, circuses and ice events, as well as open-floor exhibitions. Both the upper and lower levels will load from the top down, creating a more efficient seating pattern free of breaks. The design caters to the next generation of fans, featuring open and transparent concourses, additional social spaces within view of the action, and a variety of experiential and premium seating options. Additional operational efficiencies include vastly improved load-in/load-out capabilities that will allow the facility to accommodate a wider variety of concerts and shows.

Brad Clark, Senior Principal at Populous, said:

Inspired by the natural beauty of Wisconsin’s rivers, lakes and forests, this new Wisconsin landmark will stand out as an iconic addition to the cityscape and seamlessly connect with surrounding neighbourhoods.

Read more about the new arena at


Images courtesy: Populous, Eppstein Uhen and HNTB.


FC Barcelona has announced that the Espai Barça jury has unanimously selected the bid by Nikken Sekkei + Pascual i Ausió Arquitectes as the winner of the tender for the design of the new Camp Nou. The jury, made up of five FCB members, three members of the Col·legi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC) and one member of Barcelona City Council, made its decision after a review of the different proposals by a technical commission in accordance with the criteria established in the regulations and requirements for the tender. The decision was made at a meeting held on Tuesday afternoon in the Ricard Maxenchs Press Room at Camp Nou.

The jury commented that the “Nikken Sekkei + Pascual i Ausió Arquitectes proposal stands out for being open, elegant, serene, timeless Mediterranean and democratic”.

They also said that it is “notable for its relationship with the environment, providing depth, creating shadows and making members the stars of the facade and of the open area at all times”.

The jury went on to say that the “proposal presents a very subtle attempt to intervene in the environment to facilitate circulation and achieve diverse urban usage in the Barça Campus and guarantees a clear and safe construction”.

And in conclusion, they said “In short, it is a unique solution, reproducing the characteristic vision of the grandstand and canopy, from the inside out, a silent and powerful tribute to the stadium built by Francesc Mitjans in 1957”.

International Architectural Tender

Last June 5 brought the start of the the International Architectural Tender to select the projects for the new Camp Nou and the new Palau Blaugrana. The bidding process began with the publication of the regulations and selection criteria. The tender was run over two phases and was conducted in collaboration with the Col·legi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya.

The jury was made up of five members of FC Barcelona, four from the Board of Directors and one architect; three members of the Col·legi d’Arquitectes; and one representative of Barcelona City Council. The FC Barcelona members of the Espai Barça jury were Josep Maria Bartomeu, Susana Monje, Jordi Moix, Emili Rousaud and architect Juan Pablo Mitjans. The Col·legi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC) was represented by its dean Lluís Comeron, and architects Arcadi Pla and Joan Forgas, while the Council was represented by its assistant city planning manager, Aurora López.

The first phase of the tender involved the pre-qualification of the different teams on the basis of the regulations and selection criteria. A total of 45 teams initially presented bids, 26 for the new Camp Nou and 19 for the new Palau, along with their credentials and evidence of their experience of similar projects.

In September 2015, the Espai Barça jury and technical committee selected, from the original 26 candidatures, eight teams for the definitive tender for the new Camp Nou. The teams had to be composed of one international studio and one local one, and had to base their proposals on the list of conditions published by the technical commission overseeing the tender, which was made up of the Espai Barça technical board, led by the director of the Patrimonial Area, William T. Mannarelli, and two architects from the Col·legi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC).

The team formed by NIKKEN SEKKEI + Joan Pascual i Ramon Ausió Arquitectes was duly selected ahead of bids by: AECOM + B720 Arquitectes, AFL + Mateo Arquitectura, Arup Sport + Taller d’Arquitectura Ricardo Bofill, BIG + IDOM + BAAS Arquitectes, GENSLER Sport + OAB, HKS + COX + Batlle i Roig Arquitectes and POPULOUS + Mias Arquitectes + RCR Arquitectes.

The new Camp Nou

Work on the new Camp Nou is scheduled to start in the 2017/18 season and end in the 2021/22 season.

The design criteria states that all seats must be covered and protected from adverse weather conditions, the new roof must measure more than 47,000sqm and all seats must have a perfect view of the pitch, with the first tier being made steeper. Hospitality facilities will also be improved and new hi-tech LED screens added.

The winning team

The Japanese Nikken Sekkei company has been around for over 100 years and is one of Asia’s leading architectural and engineering studios. This company designed the Saitama Super Arena, the Big Swan Stadium in Niigata and the Tokyo Dome, all in Japan. This team is working with the Catalan studio Pascual i Ausió Arquitectes headed by Joan Pascual and Ramon Ausió, who have a long and proven history of experience in Barcelona involving residential buildings, office blocks and hotels, such as Hotel Diagonal Zero.

The Espai Barça sports district

The high-profile renovation is the biggest component of an ambitious €600m (US$651.9m, £467.4m) sports district called Espai Barça, which also includes the New Palau Balgrana multi-use arena, designed by US architects HOK.


Images courtesy: FC Barcelona.

FC Barcelona has announced that the Espai Barça jury has selected the bid by the HOK + TAC Arquitectes team as the winner of the architectural tender for the New Palau Blaugrana. The jury, formed by five members of FCB, three members of the Collegi d’Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC) and one member of Barcelona City Council, made their decision after a careful study of the different proposals, carried out by a technical commission, in accordance with specifically established regulations and the requirements of the tender process.

The bid by HOK + TAC Arquitectes is remarkably innovative with its concept of a multi-functional Palau, and is also outstanding for its permeability, flexibility and personality. With organic geometry, it offers a fine sequence between the Palau, annex court, ice rink and the FCB Escola facilities. The winning team will now commence working together with the Barça technical teams and the Barcelona City Council to make further specifications and work further on the integration of the new installations with the rest of the Espai Barça and the city.HOK Architecture is one of the most important firms in the United States in terms of architecture and engineering, with experience of all kinds of projects, all around the world. HOK developed the American Airlines Arena in Miami, the Nationwide Arena in Ohio and the Stockton Arena in California. The team also has the experience of being the architects behind the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

Locally, Eduard Gascón of TAC Arquitectes leads a solid team with extensive experience of the development of all kinds of projects in Barcelona, such as the award winning Parc del Turó de Can Mates, the Technology Centre in Manresa and different office buildings in Barcelona.

The duo overcame rival bids from Pattern Architects + Massip-Bosch Arquitectes, GMP + GCA Arquitectes, MAKE + BCQ Arquitectes, Francisco Mangado Arquitectos + Bach Arquitectes + R. Sanabria Arquitectes + I. Paricio and Wilkinson Eyre Architects + Alonso Balaguer Riera Arquitectes. The jury congratulated all of the entrants for the high level and quality of the different bids presented for tender.

The New Palau Blaugrana

The work on the New Palau Blaugrana is expected to start in the 2017/18 season and end in the 2019/20 season. The complex on which it will stand is on the current site of the Miniestadi, next to the new Camp Nou station on Metro Line 9, and will have three areas that can operate independently. One is the huge multi-purpose pavilion, with the capacity for 10,000 spectators at sports events. The others are an auxiliary court with a capacity of 2,000 and the other is a complementary ice rink.

The capacity of 10,000 meets the requirements of the Euroleague basketball competition and the seats will be arranged to be right next to the court, thus fostering a veritable ‘wave effect’.

Spectator Services

The New Palau will have wide areas that are easily accessed and conditioned for all services that spectators might require, and will be fully adapted for persons with reduced mobility.

The requirements included the need for the main and auxiliary courts to be located on the same level, with shared locker rooms and services for athletes, with each sports section having its own compact area including all necessary services, and for there to be 18 VIP boxes and two ‘skybars’ with views of the court, one of which can also function as a restaurant. It also needs to have a 200 m2 pressroom with work areas and specific services, and for access to the court to be via three tunnels to assist with assembly and disassembly of operations for different matches and other events.

The presentation of the New Palau Blaugrana construction project will take place at a public event to be held over the next few weeks.

Espai Barça

The FC Barcelona members unanimously approved the New Espai Barça, the project to transform the Club’s facilities, including the Camp Nou, Palau Blaugrana and Miniestadi. 72.36% of members gave the ‘green light’ to the remodelling and construction of the FC Barcelona premises at this site at a referendum held on 5 April 2014.

The tenders to select the architectonic projects for the construction of the New Camp Nou and New Palau Blaugrana, which began last June 5, entered the second phase with the selection of the shortlist of candidates, and the period for them to present their architectonic proposals for each installation.

The jury selected eight teams which were mainly made up of one international and one local studio each, to prepare their proposals for the New Camp Nou, and another six teams to do the same for the New Palau Blaugrana, in accordance with the recommendations made by the technical commission, made up of the Espai Barça team and two architects from the COAC.

A total of 45 teams took part in the first round of the tender, who had to present their credentials and experience of similar projects. The jury and the Espai Barça technical committee then selected the finalists, who were presented with guidelines showing all of the information required to put their projects together, along with the regulations and criteria for the second phase and all of the documentation compiled by the Espai Barça during the last year of work.

The New Camp Nou

Over the next few weeks, the jury is set to announce the winner of the project for the New Camp Nou. The eight candidates are as follows: AECOM + B720 Arquitectes, Arup Sport + Taller d’Arquitectura Ricardo Bofill, BIG + IDOM + BAAS Arquitectes, Gensler Sport + OAB, HKS + COX + Batlle i Roig Arquitectes, KSS + Mateo Arquitectura, Nikken Sekkei + Joan Pascual i Ramon Ausió Arquitectes and Populous + MIAS Arquitectes + RCR Arquitectes.

The New Miniestadi

The Batlle i Roig Arquitectes studio won the tender for the New Miniestadi, which ended last May, and will be built at the Ciutat Esportiva training ground for a cost of 12 million euros. The Batlle i Roig Arquitectes studio, which had already taken part in the architectonic design of the Ciutat Esportiva, has designed a New Miniestadi in keeping with the requirements of the tender. It will have the capacity for 6,000 spectators, adapted to UEFA category III, with covered terraces, 600 parking spaces and independently functioning from the Ciutat Esportiva. It is scheduled for opening in June 2017.


Image of the inside of the New Palau Blaugrana.



Images courtesy: FC Barcelona.

Main image: Panoramic image of the New Palau Blaugrana.

NBA Champions, the Golden State Warriors, acquired a 12-acre site in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighbourhood on Monday, where it intends to build a new, 18,000-seat sports and entertainment arena.

According to a Reuters report by Rory Carroll, the vacant waterfront lot was purchased from cloud computing technology company Inc. for an as yet undisclosed sum.

The Warriors’ plan is unique in the fact that it would be the only completely privately-financed arena or stadium in the United States for the past 20-years.

Plans for the site include an 18,000-capacity indoor arena, which will be the centrepiece of an entertainment district, featuring restaurants, cafes, offices, public plazas and a range of public spaces, including a 5-acre park on the Mission Bay waterfront.

The Arena has been designed by MANICA Architecture, with Snøhetta’s Craig Dykers acting as senior design advisor.

Rick Welts, President & COO of the Warriors, said:

The Warriors are making an unprecedented, US$1bn investment in San Francisco. We’re the only sports team in America doing this all with private funds, on private land, with no public subsidy.

A multi-use arena will play host to not only NBA basketball, but also major concerts, family shows, conventions and a variety of other attractions.

The Warriors currently play their games at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California – across the bay from San Francisco.

The new arena will mark the franchise’s return to San Francisco after 47 years – the team played in the city between 1962 and 1971 as the San Francisco Warriors, before moving to Oakland.

It is expected that the team will be rebranded and the former name reinstalled once the move has been completed.

If the current proposal wins all necessary approvals, the new Arena could be open in time for the 2018-19 NBA season.


Images courtesy: MANICA Architecture. Images rendered by steelblue



The Calgary Flames have unveiled plans for a new hockey arena and events centre, as well as a football stadium with a roof, on property west of downtown.

Flames CEO, Ken King, introduced his plans to replace the 32-year-old Scotiabank Saddledome and 55-year-old McMahon Stadium.

The complex reportedly would cost CA$890m and would be paid from four sources – a CA$240m community revitalisation levy, a CA$250m ticket tax, CA$200m from the city to fund the 30,000-seat football stadium, and CA$200m from the Calgary Sports and Entertainment Corporation (CSEC), the Flames’ ownership group.

King told the Calgary Herald:

I’m so happy to share this vision. It’s going to be a little different than people think.

The development, which is being called ‘CalgaryNEXT‘, is proposed for the community of Sunalta, nearby the Bow River. It was officially introduced to Calgarians through a series of information sessions and a media conference conducted by the Calgary Sports & Entertainment Corporation (CSEC), while also launched worldwide via:

For more than a decade, CSEC has had a vision for Calgary – a place where all Calgarians can unite in active living, sports and entertainment – a centre for the community and destination for world class events.

CalgaryNEXT includes a Multisport Fieldhouse Stadium with state-of-the-art sports and world-class athletic training facilities. It will be the anchor for a thriving field sport community and combined with the arena event centre, will be the catalyst for new economic growth on the western edge of Calgary’s urban core. The Multisport Fieldhouse Stadium will have a seating capacity of 30,000 for football games and other events.

CalgaryNEXT also includes an innovatively designed arena event centre – a place that will host both professional and amateur ice and sporting events. It will also increase capacity for concerts and conferences. The event centre will be a community gathering place for sports and events, as well as unique public spaces and a variety of food and beverage options.

The arena event centre will have seating in the range of 19,000 – 20,000 fans for hockey and lacrosse games, cultural events, and community service.

CalgaryNEXT will be designed to host world-class national and international events that wouldn’t otherwise be in Calgary: Premier events, including soccer, track & field, cultural festivals and concerts; bringing significant economic benefits to the city.

CalgaryNEXT’s location near the Bow River will also be a catalyst that will draw residential and commercial development that will see a vibrant new community with shops, cafes and retail space. It will be the globally recognised centrepiece of a revitalized West Village. It will enable the completion of our urban core and transform how Calgarians live, work and play.


The planned Multi-Sport Fieldhouse Stadium at CalgaryNEXT


Images courtesy: Calgary Flames/CSEC