European Stadium Tour to Moscow and Saint Petersburg: the Highlights
This year’s European Stadium Tour from 2 to 5 July was held in Russia where several venues in Moscow and Saint Petersburg were visited.
On Day 1 participants had the opportunity to go to the third place playoff FIFA Confederations Cup game between Portugal and Mexico at Spartak Stadium (Otkritie Arena), which Portugal won by 2-1.
The first stadium we visited was VEB Arena. The CSKA staff showed participants around the stadium and provided more information about the project’s ideology to create a business oriented stadium and about the new business center. VEB Arena is home to CSKA Moscow and has a capacity of 30,000 seats. Construction started in 2007 and finished in 2016 with $350 million being invested in the project. Other facilities integrated in the stadium are: an office center, hotel, premises for sports leisure sections and retail as well as a museum with the club’s history.
In the afternoon of Day 2, Andrew Penkin, Stadium Manager of the Russia 2018 LOC, led participants around the Luzhniki Stadium. Luzhniki Stadium has a rich history of major sports and cultural events; the FIFA World Cup 2018 final will be played here. Furthermore, most games of the Russia national football team are being played at the stadium and in the past Luzhniki Stadium has been home for Moscow's Spartak, CSKA and Torpedo. It also hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics. $340 million has been invested in the Luzhniki Stadium, which has been under construction since 2013 to increase the capacity to 81,000.
During Day 3 in Moscow, VTB Arena was the first stop of the day. The VTB Arena Park staff showcased the construction of the multi-purpose sports and entertainment complex as well as a tour around the venue. When the stadium is finished, the home games of FC Dynamo will be played here and it will have a 26,000 seats capacity. With a $1.6 billion investment, the Arena Park will also have a multi-sports hall (for basketball and ice hockey).
After a Federations Cup game on Day 1, during Day 3 ESSMA members had the opportunity to learn more about the Otkritie Stadium project. Alexander Atamanenko, Commercial Director of Spartak Moscow, showcased the Otkritie project with an extended stadium tour. Otkritie Arena (Spartak Stadium) is home to FC Spartak Moscow and the Russian national team. In 2010 reconstruction started and it finished four years later. Around $430 million was invested in the project. Its design takes the form of chain mail consisting of hundreds of little diamonds representing the Spartak logo.
The last venue visited during the Russian tour was the Krestovsky (Saint Petersburg) Stadium in Saint Petersburg. The FC Zenit staff showcased the Krestovsky project and participants had the opportunity to explore the stadium. The Krestovsky Stadium has a capacity of 68,000. Construction started in 2008 and it's currently still under construction. Between $1.1 and 1.4 billion has been invested in the project. FK Zenit Sint-Petersburg will be the home team once the stadium is completed. The stadium will also host several games during UEFA EURO 2018 as one of the 13 stadiums.
Go to our ESSMA Flickr account for more pictures.