World Cup 2018 – Venues – Cosmos Arena

Cosmos Arena is a football stadium in Samara, Russia. The stadium is one of the venues for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. It will be called Samara Arena during the World Cup. It also hosts FC Krylia Sovetov Samara of the Russian Football National League, replacing Metallurg Stadium. It has a capacity of 44,918 spectators. Samara authorities announced their design tender in late 2012 with the cost estimated at $320 million.

Location

In the initial bid submitted to FIFA the new stadium was to be built on an island south of the city, where almost no settlements or infrastructure exist. There wasn’t even a bridge leading there at that time.

This caused criticism and so the stadium was relocated up north, to be built within city limits. Initially, its area was planned to be 27 ha, but it was changed to 240 ha, and then up to 930 ha, the decision to enlarge the complex area was taken before any consultation with Samara residents. Most of the constructions planned on the enlarged area have no relation to sports.

Bordering the stadium in the south is a high-density residential neighbourhood, Volga micro district, the construction of which began in 1978 and reached its peak by the mid-1980s. The micro district was constructed on the territory of the village Yablonka, which as a farm, is known from the end of the 19th century. The first residents of the village were settlers from the central regions of Russia, Ukraine and Poland. Even under Soviet rule, people who “were caught in a religious dope” were also sent here. In 1930, the inhabitants of the village organized the collective farm “Iskra”. Nowadays Yablonka occupies the territory within the streets of Tashkentskaya, Demokraticheskaya and the Radio Center. What remains of the original village consists, besides low-density houses, cemetery and Shishiga Lake, gradually turning into a dump of domestic and construction waste.

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The area south-west of the stadium is called Radio centre №3, originally called Radio Centre. It was built-in 1949. The choice of place is not accidental as at that time it was the highest point in the city. Broadcast on short waves here was started in 1952. At the Radio centre, the town of the same name appeared, in which the specialists who worked there lived. Despite its more than modest size, in its infrastructure, there was a place for a small House of Culture and a school. The centre of culture had closed, and now the building is empty. The school operated until 1981, after which its school housed a cycling school. In November 2013, the partial dismantling of antennas and other structures began. With a new radio centre planned to be built (practically on the same site), the main highlight of which will be a 240-meter-high television tower that will be located on 10 hectares.

During the tournament, the stadium will host Costa Rica v Serbia (Group E), Denmark v Australia (Group C), Uruguay v Russia (Group A), Senegal v Colombia (Group H), a round of 16 game plus a quarter-final.

The Other Venues

Samara Arena, Nizhny Novgorod, Volgograd Arena, Ekaterinburg Arena, Mordovia Arena, Rostov Arena, Kaliningrad Stadium, Kazan ArenaFisht Stadium, Saint Petersburg Stadium, Luzhniki Stadium, Otkritie Arena.