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Thursday, December 10, 2009

San Nicola Stadium, Bari

Swinging the lead: Day 2 Part 1

Castel del Monte

No sign of a quick recovery from my heavy cold so expect more stadium titbits from my daughter’s Architectural book and journal collection as my reading continues apace. Today’s first offering is from a hefty tome entitled the The 1996 Jerusalem Seminar in Architecture, in which the design of the San Nicola Stadium, Bari home of Italian Seria A side AS Bari is discussed.

San Nicola Stadium

Mimicking the nearby 13th-Century Castel del Monte a huge man made hill was built and the stadium placed on top of it. Castel del Monte or, translated from the Italian, the Castle on the Mount, is a strange looking affair octagonal in shape with octagonal bastions in each of its corners. Each floor has eight rooms and an eight-sided courtyard occupies its centre. The number eight was clearly of some significance to Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II who built it. The modern day architects were asked to build the stadium in like fashion, similarly raised up on an earthwork.

San Nicola Stadium

Built for the 1990 World Cup the most prominent feature of the stadium are it twenty-six ‘petals’ - representing a flower carefully laid down on the surrounding plains - that form the upper tier. Each of the petals has seating for two-thousand spectators, and combined with the seating in the lower tier, gives a total capacity of 58,000. The eight metre gaps between each of the petals serve two purposes. The first is to allow natural ventilation through out the stadium and the second is for security, the architects assuming that groups of two-thousand people are easy to control. This overlooks the possibility of trouble on the main tier were separation is by means of fence only! Anyway, it looks pretty cool. The petals, together with the lower bowl, are built almost entirely from concrete, mostly prefabricated, and are topped off with a light steel frame that supports the stadiums Teflon sunshade.

The San Nicola Stadium hosted three Italia ’90 World Cup group games and the third-place play-off between the host nation and Bobby Robson’s England. The great mans last game in charge of the Three Lions.

[The photos were found here, here and here]

posted by chevblue at 4:06 pm






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