The 2022 FIFA World Cup—the quadrennial international men’s soccer championship will take place in Doha, Qatar from November 20th to December 18th. It will be the first World Cup ever to be held in the Arab world, the second World Cup held entirely in Asia, and the last World Cup to involve 32 teams. (It will increase to 48 teams in the 2026 tournament.) Normally played in May, June, or July, this will also be the first World Cup to take place at this time of year (due to Qatar’s intense summer heat). The first match played at this stadium will be between Qatar and Ecuador on November 30th.
Designed by the internationally renowned architectural design studio Fenwick Iribarren Architects of Spain and named after the number of colorful shipping containers used for its construction. the number 974 is also the country’s international dialing code. Formerly known as Ras Abu Aboud, the 40,000-seat sports venue near Doha’s port is the first stadium designed to be fully ‘demountable’ in FIFA World Cup history.
It’s a modular structure combining repurposed shipping containers and steel. The plan is for the stadium to be dismantled and reassembled in a new location after the tournament or repurposed as a series of smaller venues. And many of the shipping containers in the structure were used to transport construction materials to the sight. The shape of the stadium and gaps between the seats facilitate natural ventilation, meaning artificial cooling is not required. This is helped by the stadium’s proximity to the sea.
According to the Supreme Committee for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 (SC), Stadium 974 has been designed to achieve five-star certification in the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) for both its construction and design. [GSAS rates green building and infrastructure across the Middle East and North Africa. [Six stars is the highest achievable rating.] The SC hopes also hopes the project will serve as “an innovative blueprint” for more sustainable stadium designs for future largescale events.
“The striking Stadium 974 is a proud symbol of sustainability and innovation,” said SC chairman and engineer Yasir Al Jamal.