GLOUCESTERSHIRE, U.K. – In 2016, we wrote that a 5,000-seat all-timber stadium was being commissioned for England's Forest Green Rovers soccer club. Now, it has been greenlit.

The stadium will be the focus of a $124 million “Eco Park” development, which totals over 100 acres of space dedicated to sports and green technology. The stadium will be commissioned by London-based architectural firm Zaha Hadid (ZHA), who won a seven-month-long international competition to design the stadium. Over 50 entries from around the world were submitted.

Designed to be the world's greenest football stadium, it will be constructed completely from timber and powered by sustainable energy sources.

"The really standout thing about this stadium is that it's going to be entirely made of wood – the first time that will have been done anywhere in the world," said Forest Green Rovers chairman Dale Vince. “Our new stadium will have the lowest carbon content of any stadium in the world.”

Constructed from slats of timber, the stadium’s undulating, wave-like style was not only selected for aesthetic and design purposes, but acts as an acoustic device to contain crowd noise. Positioning of the seats will be calculated to give spectators completely unobstructed views of the pitch.

The city council rejected ZHA's original plan in June 2019. The council worried that the stadium's design wasn't green enough to make up for the loss of green fields it will be built on. It also was concerned that the 65-foot-tall stadium would block views of nearby historic landmarks.
ZHA modified the design, added an all-weather pitch, altered its landscaping strategy, and improved its match day transport plan. On December 18, the council voted six in favor of the plan, four against.

Photos by ZHA


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