Browsing 'SCDL' News

All photos courtesy of SCDL

Qatar’s first World Cup stadium opened with a bang yesterday, wowing 40,000+ spectators with fireworks, cultural performances and a 20C pitch.

The venue’s launch comes five years before Qatar hosts the tournament and is seen by many as a huge step forward in 2022 preparations.

Last night’s match also saw Al Sadd clinch the Emir Cup after defeating Al Rayyan 2-1.


Qatar’s Emir at Khalifa International Stadium

Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim awarded the winning team its trophy. And he also cut the ribbon to mark the inauguration of the stadium.

According to QNA, he “announced in the name of every Qatari and Arab citizen” that the venue is ready to host the 2022 World Cup.

Racing toward 2022

The game was also attended by several other sporting officials. These include FIFA President Gianni Infantino and Asian Football Confederation President Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa.

FIFA will have the final say over whether the stadiums Qatar prepares to meet World Cup specifications.


Al Bayt stadium progress, May 2017

It still has not decided on the number of venues Qatar needs to host the tournament. But it is expected to be around eight.

Organizers have set a 2020 deadline for all of the under-construction stadiums, but Khalifa International opened six months late.

Meanwhile, designs for three of the upcoming venues have yet to be released.

Amid pressure to complete all venues on time, Qatar also continues to be dogged by rights abuse concerns at stadium sites.

Innovative stadium

But the stress of the balancing act was put aside for at least one night during Khalifa Stadium’s reopening.

The venue has been lauded for its cooling technology, sleek design and upcoming sports museum.


Sensory room at Khalifa International Stadium

It even has a “sensory room” for those who who want to watch matches without getting anxious or overstimulated.

In a statement about Khalifa International’s launch, Hassan Al Thawadi, Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SCDL), said:

“The completion of our first stadium more than five years before the Qatar World Cup begins is an important milestone that reflects our determination to deliver a tournament the entire Arab world is proud to be a part of.

As we promised in our bid, our innovative stadiums offer an unrivaled experience to fans and players alike. I’m proud we can show these off to the world and welcome fans with the hospitality this World Cup will be remembered for.”


Reem Saad / Doha News

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Up to 1.3 million football fans are expected to turn out for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, a senior official has said.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, Nasser Al Khater, assistant secretary general of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SCDL), called the figure “a ceiling cap.”

It is higher than the 1 million fan estimate he previously mentioned in 2015.


New Khalifa International Stadium

But this could be because World Cup organizers have since shifted the tournament to Qatar’s cooler winter months.

According to AFP, Al Khater added that for the first time, the World Cup will see more fans coming from the Middle East and Asia, as opposed to Europe and South America.

“I think first of all, football is changing, but I think also because of the geographical location of Qatar, I think we are going to see the majority of fans coming from the region, mainly Saudi Arabia,” as well as India and Russia, he said.

The official was speaking during a press tour of the renovated Khalifa International Stadium.


New Khalifa International Stadium

The venue is the first in Qatar to become World Cup ready, and officially opens to the public today.

Fan zone safety

Tonight’s match between Al Said and Al Rayyan kicks off at 7pm. But the fan zone opens at 3:30pm and will include cultural performances and a food festival.

The opening ceremony of the Emir Cup final will begin at 6pm.

Ahead of the game, the Ministry of Interior has tweeted several pieces of advice for spectators, including:

  • Arrive early and be sure to head to the right gates when you’re ready to be seated;
  • Do not bring prohibited items such as fireworks, sharp tools, and glass, metal or water bottles; and
  • Do not carry banners with offensive language or wear clothing with photos or phrases “that undermine public modesty.”

First of its kind

Khalifa International Stadium was originally build in 1976 and was renovated 30 years later to host the Asian Games.

All photos courtesy of SCDL

It has undergone a second overhaul to meet FIFA’s standards for the World Cup.

New features include expanded capacity to hold up to 40,000 fans; the installation of cooling technology (which will come in handy this sweltering weekend); and the construction of a sports museum, among other things.

Are you going to the game tonight? Thoughts?

All photos courtesy of SCDL

The seats have been installed, the pitch has been laid and a roof canopy is being fitted onto what will soon be Qatar’s first completed stadium for the 2022 World Cup.

A series of “sneak peek” photographs published by organizers this week show the latest progress on the redevelopment of Khalifa International stadium in Al Waab.

The pictures show contractors putting the finishing touches on the stadium, which will host matches up to the quarter-finals.

The 40,000 seats are in – with many still under protective wrapping – and 7,800 square meters of turf for the pitch were laid last month.


Progress at Khalifa stadium

The completion date of the venue has now been pushed to the end of June, according to the Supreme Committee of Delivery and Legacy (SCDL).

This is around six months later than the original deadline of December 2016.

Khalifa stadium was first built more than 40 years ago and opened in 1976. It was then extensively refurbished to host the Asian Games in 2006.


Rendering of Khalifa Stadium

It is now once again being remodeled and modernized for the World Cup, with its arches redesigned and canopies installed to provide some shade for spectators. It will also have a cooling system for players and fans.

A walkway will connect to a new 3-2-1 Olympic and Sports Museum, which is also under construction.

Confirmed venues

Qatar is readying eight stadiums for the 2022 World Cup.

So far, designs have been released and construction work is under way on five of these venues. In addition to Khalifa International, they include Al Bayt Al Khor, Al Rayyan, Education City and Al Wakrah.

Al Khor and Al Wakrah are expected to be completed next, by the end of 2018, according to the SCDL.

Al Rayyan stadium will follow in March 2019 and the Qatar Foundation venue is slated for a late 2019 completion.

This week, the SCDL also provided updates on the Al Khor stadium in a new video.

It shows that nearly half of the stadium structure is now in place. Additionally, concrete modular seating structures for the 60,000-capacity venue have been installed.

Meanwhile, work is underway on the second players’ tunnel, according to the short film.

In design

The sites of the three other stadiums have been confirmed, and will be in Al Thumama, Ras Abu Aboud and at Lusail city.

However, these designs have yet to be made public.


Al Thumama stadium site

Last week, a Seoul-based firm announced that it won a $16.2 million contract to design the $342.5 million Al Thumama venue, situated between E- and F-Ring Roads.

Construction of the stadium will be led by a joint venture of Qatar’s Al Jaber Engineering and Turkish firm Tekfen Construction.

Meanwhile, the Lusail venue will be the showpiece for the games. It will host the opening and closing ceremonies, as well as matches throughout the tournament and the World Cup final.

A joint venture between Qatari firm HBK Contracting Co. (HBK) and China Railway Construction Corp. (CRCC) is responsible for leading the build of the stadium.


Construction at Lusail stadium site

British architectural firm Fosters + Partners has been working on the design of the venue, which organizers previously said was completed last year.

This was supposed to be revealed early this year, but is so far still under wraps.

Finally, the Ras Abu Aboud stadium will be at the center of a new waterfront development between Hamad International Airport and the Doha Port.


View from the upcoming Ras Abu Aboud stadium

Organizers are planning to build a new “urban neighborhood” on the 111-acre site next to the Doha Marriott Hotel.

Architecture firm Populous is the design consultant for the 40,000-seater venue, which will hold matches up until the quarter-finals.

The SCDL previously said it planned to be “managing eight live construction sites by mid-2017,” with construction on them finished by 2020.