World Cup 2018 – Venues – The Kaliningrad Stadium
The Kaliningrad Stadium, also called Arena Baltika, is a football stadium on Oktyabrsky Island, Kaliningrad, Russia, which will host four games of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. It will also host FC Baltika Kaliningrad of the Russian Football National League, replacing Baltika Stadium.
This will be a two-tier stadium, equipped with ultramodern security systems and CCTV. The project is based on the concept of the Allianz Arena, which hosted matches of the 2006 World Cup in Germany. The project cost is planned around 11 billion rubles. The first match was played on 11 April 2018. The stadium following the 2018 World Cup will turn into 25,000 seating capacity and part of the roof will be retracted.
Kaliningrad Stadium is located only 45 kilometres from the border with Poland (Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship), which makes it the stadium of the 2018 FIFA World Cup that is located closest to the European Union and the Schengen Area.
In April 2012 the regional government chose the French architectural bureau Wilmotte & Associes, SA stadium construction project. The project itself is worth $720 million. 50% of the sum will be allocated from the federal budget, and the other half from the regional budget. Construction began soon after. It is worth noting that the stadium after the 2018 World Cup will become a 25,000-seat venue. To accommodate this downsizing, part of the roof will be removed.
At the end of October 2012 the regional authorities announced an open competition to develop the project and working documents for the World Cup stadium. The winner was Mostovik. At the beginning of March 2013, Mostovik published a stadium sketch, which received the working title of Arena Baltika.
In June 2014 the Omsk Arbitration Court declared “Mostovik” bankrupt and, in March 2015, termination of the contract with the company began. On 1 April 2014 a government order published by the government declared the appointment of ZAO “Crocus International” as the sole executor of the Ministry of Sports of the Russian Federation for the works on the construction. The state contract was signed between the Government of the Kaliningrad Oblast and Crocus International “to develop the project and working documentation on the design of the stadium”.
On 10 June 2015 it was reported that the stadium project was sent to the state examination. On 20 July, the layout of the stadium was presented.
At first, regional authorities considered the option with the construction of new sports facilities in the city centre, on the place of the current Baltika Stadium. Finally, in December 2014 it was announced that Oktyabrsky Island will be the location of the new stadium, even though it is often under threat of flooding and work on it requires additional financial investments.
On 10 August 2015, it became known that the stadium will be named “Stadium Kaliningrad” or in the English version, Kaliningrad Stadium.
The Other Venues
Samara Arena, Nizhny Novgorod, Volgograd Arena, Ekaterinburg Arena, Mordovia Arena, Rostov Arena, Kaliningrad Stadium, Kazan Arena, Fisht Stadium, Saint Petersburg Stadium, Luzhniki Stadium, Otkritie Arena.
— FIFA World Cup 🇷🇺 (@_2018WC) 9 June 2018