Discover Al Janoub Stadium, one of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ venues
ESSMA interviewed Mr. Thani Al Zarraa, Project Manager of Al Janoub Stadium at the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, to provide the ESSMA community with exclusive insights into the preparations of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ and Al Janoub Stadium in particular.
Al Janoub Stadium, formerly known as Al Wakrah Stadium, became the second tournament-ready FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ venue in May 2019, after Khalifa International Stadium. Its design is inspired by the sails of traditional dhow boats – in tribute to Al Wakrah’s seafaring past.
What were the main challenges in terms of construction?
Every construction project has its own, and Al Janoub Stadium was no exception. Transferring the stadium’s unique design from concept to reality, whilst ensuring it adheres to all FIFA requirements, could perhaps be recounted as one such challenge.
“Al Janoub Stadium is one of the first stadiums in the world to be equipped with 5G mobile communications signals that cover the entire spectator area. In addition, more than 1,000 Wi-Fi access points are deployed across the stadium to enable high-density connectivity for fans and the operations team.”
What are the different security systems that will be put together to deliver a smooth functioning and secure tournament?
An efficient number of CCTV cameras are deployed within the stadium and its vicinity to support surveillance operations. 40 high megapixel cameras provide full coverage of the entire fan area. The stadium Spectator Access Control System is equipped with 83 turnstiles with a total system capacity of 63,900 passages per hour. When tested during the 2019 Amir Cup final, the peak passages per hour recorded was 20,000 – 31% of the total system capacity.
In addition, we plan to collaborate with international partners including INTERPOL to establish a national police unit dedicated for stadium security, which is the first of its kind in the Middle East.
Have you established a dedicated training programme for stewards?
In September 2018, we launched a volunteering programme inviting all those interested in supporting Qatar in its preparations for hosting 2022 to register and join the road to 2022. So far, we have over 265,000 registered volunteers, 60,000 of which are based in Qatar alone.
To help provide these volunteers with the necessary training and skills, we provide training workshops to help teach them the importance of planning, team management and peer learning. More importantly, they also form part of the workforce at all events we deliver, where we offer them a glimpse into the hard work required to deliver successful events, and the exciting challenges one must bear in mind. For example, more than 1,000 volunteers from Qatar and across the region helped ensure the 2019 Amir Cup final – the first match to be played at Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah City – which was a tremendous success.
How important is legacy planning in sustaining international relations after the FIFA World Cup™?
Demountable seating is a key legacy element of FIFA World Cup™ stadiums and one of the main bid promises made by Qatar as part of its demonstration to FIFA how hosting the tournament will support the development of football across the region and Asia.
The upper seating tiers at Al Janoub Stadium will be demounted and donated post 2022, in consultation with FIFA, to football development projects in developing nations. In total, more than 170,000 seats will be demounted and donated.
"Thanks to the compact nature of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™, travel time between venues should take a maximum of one hour.”
What purposes will Al Janoub Stadium serve after the FIFA World Cup™?
As part of the tournament’s lasting legacy, Al Janoub Stadium is designed to provide a space that will contribute to the continual development and growth of Al Wakrah City. The venue and its amnesties aren’t just there for visitors from overseas to enjoy during the FIFA World Cup™. Instead, the venue will be an integral part of the local community, forming one of the city’s major landmarks and providing a new space for its residents and visitors to enjoy a host of sporting, educational and commercial facilities that will help boost tourism and business opportunities. With its retractable roof and innovative, sustainable cooling technology, the stadium will be a multipurpose venue that can be used by the local community all year round.
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