World Cup 2018 – Venues – The Volgograd Arena
The stadium was built on site of the demolished Central Stadium, at the foot of the Mamayev Kurgan memorial complex, near the Volga River. The previous stadium was built in 1958, on the site of a former oil depot. This area was undeveloped, occupied by randomly distributed low-value buildings, warehouses, barracks and ravines.
To save money it was proposed to make the stadium a compact, single object, which consisted of the podium at the 40 thousand spectators, a sports arena of the Olympic sample and two large sports complex with 10 different gyms. The complex included a swimming pool and riding school which was not built due to lack of funds.
The stadium’s façade takes the form of an inverted, truncated cone with an open lattice structure, lending the entire building a monumental solidity. The design for the façade supports and the windbreaks embody aspects of a Victory Day firework display. The special way in which the stadium’s roof has been constructed, with cables reminiscent of the spokes of the wheel on a bicycle, lends the arena an extra element of airiness.
After Russia 2018, the tremendous stadium will be home to FC Rotor, who in the past has finished in the top three in the Russian championship standings.
During the tournament, the stadium will host Tunisia v England (Group G), Nigeria v Iceland (Group D), Saudi Arabia v Egypt (Group A) and Japan v Poland (Group H).
Formerly known as Stalingrad, Volgograd extends alongside the Volga River and has 1 million residents. Modern Volgograd is an important manufacturing centre, with industries that include shipbuilding, oil refining and steel and aluminium production.
Volgograd and the surrounding area saw some of the heaviest battles during World War II. The Battle of Stalingrad was a turning point in the war. The 85-metre “Motherland calling” statue is Volgograd’s landmark and can be seen from any point of the city.
Volgograd is a centre for ecotourism in Russia. The city is close to the unique Volga-Akhtubin floodplains, the last pristine stretch of the Volga river valleys. Lakes makeup 30 percent of the park’s territory and count over 200 species of birds.
Volgograd is a true sporting city. Yelena Isynbayeva, a multiple world pole-vaulting champion and ambassador for Russia’s bid to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup began her sporting career in Volgograd.
Volgograd Arena and the Motherland Calls memorial. pic.twitter.com/tO6hoprFSZ
— James Ellingworth (@jellingworth) 8 May 2018