As the Qatar World Cup 2022 edges closer, organisers have announced a new unique football stadium ahead of the competition, one that will stand as a symbol of the country.
The Al Thumama Stadium, the sixth proposed stadium proposed for the 2022 World Cup, will be constructed to represent the image of a gahfiya head cap – a symbol of dignity and independence.
Designed by Qtari architect, M.Jaidah, Chief Architect of Arab Engineering Bureau, the stadium will seat around 40,000 fans, and will be located in the southern suburbs of Doha.
Construction work on the site has already begun and will be undertaken by a joint-venture between Al Jaber Engineering, based in Qatar, and Tekfen Construction from Turkey.
“The design is a nod to the past, while offering an exciting glimpse into Qatar’s tomorrow,” said Jaodah. “In Qatari culture, the gahfiya forms an important part of every young boy’s pathway to adulthood.”
He added: “This rite of passage inspired my vision for the stadium’s design. It is an arena that symbolises Qatar’s youth and its emergence as a major player on the global sporting scene, ready to welcome the world in 2022.”
Following the end of the tournament, the stadium will house a range of amenities, including a boutique hotel and branch of Aspetar Sports Clinic. The stadium precinct will become a community hub featuring facilities for numerous sports, including handball, tennis and swimming, among others.
Al Thumama is one of six confirmed stadiums. These include:
Al Bayt Stadium, a 60,000-seater stadium in Doha, with a design based on the tents of nomadic tribes the stadium looks set to be completed in 2018. The stadium is being delivered by Aspire Zone Foundation.
Al Ryyan Stadium, a 40,000-seater stadium, it will incorporate symbols of Qatari culture into its spectacular undulating façade.
Al Wakrah, a 40,000-seater stadium located in one of Qatar’s oldest continuously inhabited areas. The design, from zaha Hadid, was inspired by the waves in which the dhow boats would sail upon.
Khalifa International, another 40,000-seater stadium, was delivered by Aspire Zone Foundation in May 2017. The stadium was built in 1976, and over the years, many new structures have been added to the landscape around Khalifa International Stadium, transforming it into the Aspire Zone centre of sporting excellence it is today. One of the most striking additions is The Torch Doha hotel – a distinctive skyscraper built for the 2006 Asian Games, which watches over the arena. Close by sits Hamad Aquatic Centre, complete with a façade modelled on a boat, and the futuristic-looking Aspire Dome multi-sports centre.