Narendra Modi Stadium

Ahmedabad, India
Delivering the world’s largest cricket ground is no easy task. The challenge was made even harder by a tight time frame, with construction only taking three years. In Narendra Modi Stadium, Populous has created a new home for Indian cricket — one the whole country can be proud of.

Our team has a deep understanding of what it takes to design a great cricket venue. We have been involved with projects at some of the world’s most iconic grounds, from Lord’s, Edgbaston and the Oval in England, to Sky Stadium in New Zealand and the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia which was the world’s largest cricket venue, until Narendra Modi Stadium surpassed it.  

In India, no sport can match cricket for popularity, so filling such a colossal stadium wouldn’t be a problem. Accommodating 132,000 spectators inevitably presents challenges, though. First, you’ve got to get them safely into the ground. Here, the solution is ingeniously simple, using an elevated podium to separate fans from vehicular traffic, which flows underneath them. Spectators approach from the north side, entering the first floor via a ramp, which ascends 12 metres to create a fantastic plaza where fans can gather before events. 

Inside the stadium, the bowl was deliberately designed with a round, open shape that gives every one of the 132,000 seats uninterrupted sightlines of the action on the field. Separated into two distinct tiers, the lower level can be used on its own for smaller events to maintain the same sense of spectacle. The stadium also incorporates a number of key sustainability features, including low-energy LED lighting, and a state-of-the-art drainage system that keeps rain delays as short as possible.   

On Nov. 19, 2023, the stadium hosted its most significant event to date, the final of the 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup. Narendra Modi Stadium isn’t just for major tournaments, though. Its ties to the community create an important part of its legacy, with an indoor cricket academy housed within the podium and a dorm for 40 athletes that allows students from across India to attend it, developing India’s next generation of cricket stars. 

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