Populous to bring global experience to the Italian sports and entertainment market

September 9, 2021

Populous, the world-leading sport and entertainment architecture and design practice, has today announced the official opening of a new office in Milan, strengthening its commitment to growth in Italy.

Populous has a long-established presence within the Italian sports infrastructure market, stretching back more than 15 years and including the delivery of the Oval Lingotto in Turin, built to host skating events for the 2006 Winter Olympics.

In Europe, the practice is known for iconic sports and entertainment projects such as the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and O2 Arena in London, Groupama Stadium in Lyon, and the Estadio da Luz stadium in Lisbon.

Populous has undertaken masterplanning, architectural design and overlay design as part of the successful candidature bid for the Paris 2024 Olympics, was recently appointed to complete the £100m refurbishment of the sustainability-led design of the Stade de la Meinau in Strasbourg and is behind The Cathedral, a proposed scheme for a new 60,000-seat stadium for AC Milan and Inter Milan.

Populous has also led the design of a new generation of world-class arena projects, including the Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, MSG Sphere London and MSG Sphere Las Vegas, and Co-op Live, the new music-driven venue for Manchester, set to open in 2023.

  • Stade de la Meinau Renovation, Strasbourg, France
  • Co-op Live, Manchester, UK
  • The Cathedral, Milano, Italia

Located at the centre of the city’s historic district in Milan Duomo, the new office will bring Populous’ full scope of services to the Italian market, including architecture, masterplanning, interior design, event planning, brand activation, and design-led business planning.

Declan Sharkey, a Senior Principal at Populous has been appointed General Manager of Populous Italia and he will be joined by Principal Silvia Prandelli, who will lead the practice in Italy.

Silvia is an industry veteran who has held senior positions in both architectural and engineering firms in the UK, US, and Italy, working across a range of largescale and complex sports and entertainment venue projects in Italy and around the globe.

Christopher Lee, Managing Director of Populous (EMEA) said:

“We are excited to be announcing the opening of our studio in Milan and to bring the full scope of our global knowledge and expertise to the Italian market. Building on our longstanding history within the Italian sports and entertainment sectors, this will enable us to better serve our clients in Italy, working hand-in-hand with them to both design and deliver the world’s best sports and entertainment projects.

“Bringing Silvia on board will allow Populous to develop further opportunities on the ground in Italy where our design experience and expertise has much to offer.”

Declan Sharkey, General Manager of Populous Italia said:

The opening of our Milan office comes at an extremely exciting time for Italian sport as both public and private bodies seek to boost the industry through considerable investment in infrastructure.

“We are excited to bring an increased presence to this incredibly exciting market, allowing us to better serve our clients in Italy.”

Silvia Prandelli, Principal and Milan office lead, said:

“The new office in Milan will facilitate Populous’ expansion within Italy and establishes a local presence, enabling us to better design and deliver world-class projects for our clients – from concept design right through to project completion. In a very practical sense, the move brings us closer to our clients and partners in the country and will enhance communication and networking opportunities.”


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