Populous’ design for the $300M main stadium in Incheon, South Korea, for the 2014 Asian Games illustrates a new level of sustainable design in stadia in Asia. The stadium holds 60,000 people for the Games, and will reduce down to a single sided grandstand for 30,000 afterwards as a People’s Park for the city of Incheon. The key to it’s success will be linking it into the surrounding parklands in legacy mode, to make it an open and accessible building for its people.
Incheon is one of Asia’s fastest growing cities and with the opening of the international airport in 2001, has become a logistics centre for Northeast Asia. The multipurpose stadium will be the first landmark building people see when travelling to Seoul from Incheon international airport. Populous is working on the project with local firm Heerim Architects and Planners.
The stadium is based on an asymmetrical configuration with the main corporate and management facilities located on the permanent western side, creating a more efficient design, both in terms of construction and operations. The Eastern side will be a lighter solution, the temporary modular seating structure will disappear after the games, merging with the parklands.
Symbolism is important to Korean culture, dance and music part of everyday life. The traditional Buddhist ritual dance, the Seung Moo Monk dance, provided the image that reflected perfectly the architectural drama of Incheon stadium – flowing form and space around dynamic movement.