Germans to design national stadium
“A German company has won a competition to design the National Stadium in Warsaw that will be a centerpiece of the Euro 2012 European soccer championships.
The question of where to build the stadium ? an issue that has been hotly debated ? is expected to be resolved in the next couple of weeks.
Competition winner GMP and JSK Architects has a wealth of experience in stadium architecture. One of its best-known projects is the Olympic Stadium in Berlin.
GMP and JSK beat out 15 other firms in the design competition.
In choosing a winner, the Ministry of Sports took into consideration the designs, the designers’ experience with stadiums and the likely cost of building a stadium based on each design.
The ministry noted that the German company’s victory means it will design the stadium, but the design the company submitted may not be the final project design.
GMP and JSK has designed a number of German stadiums plus stadiums in South Africa that were built for the 2010 World Soccer Championships.
The National Stadium will replace the old 10th-Anniversary Stadium.
The question is whether it will be built on the current stadium site or in nearby Blonie.
The National Stadium will be the venue for the (June 9) opening match of the Euro 2012 championships that will be co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine. It is expected to be finished several months ahead of the first match ? in September of 2011.
When the question of the stadium’s location first arose, city officials mentioned several possibilities. They included the Sluzewiec Racetrack grounds, the Luk Siekierkowski area, the Zielona Bialoleka neighborhood near the Trasa Torunska expressway, the Wesola district, and a site near the planned Northern Bridge in the Bialoleka district.
Former Sports Minister Elzbieta Jakubiak preferred the old stadium location in the Praga district or somewhere nearby.
Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz said Sluzewiec was the best location from a transportation perspective ? getting fans to and from the stadium.
New Prime Minister Donald Tusk intervened in the stand-off by asking those directing the soccer-championship effort to focus first on a design and then on a location.