From Motera to the Narendra Modi Stadium.

Cricket in India is an emotion that unites distant generations with each other. In India, the fusion of sports and architecture embraced scales by welcoming the largest cricket stadium, the Narendra Modi stadium, at Motera in Ahmedabad. The President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, officially inaugurated the stadium on the 24th of February, 2021. The Narendra Modi Stadium is the new name for the former Sardar Patel stadium. Besides being the second-largest sports stadium of its kind, it is a part of the Sardar Patel Sports Complex. Additionally, this internationally designed complex vaunts state-of-art football, hockey, and tennis stadiums with indoor sports arenas.

The Narendra Modi Cricket stadium
The Narendra Modi Cricket Stadium (© Gujarat Cricket Association)

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The new development of the Narendra Modi Stadium:

The new ecological development can house 1,32,000 spectators as against the former capacity of 49,000. Being the brain-child of Prime-Minister Narendra Modi, it sprouted when he was the chief minister of Gujarat. It was envisioned three years ago by Populus, an architectural firm specializing in Sports designs like the Melbourne Cricket ground. However, Ar. Andrew James calls N.M.S (Narendra Modi Stadium) a challenge. Being sanctioned at 800 crores, one-sixth of global cost, it demanded experimenting and research.

Construction of the Narendra Modi Stadium
The construction phase of the Narendra Modi Stadium (© ArchEstudy)

The spatial configuration of the stadium:

The Narendra Modi stadium owns 63-acres of land and has three entries with a metro line at one of them. It has 76 corporate boxes that hold 25 people each, a 55-room clubhouse, and an Olympic size swimming pool. The spillover areas shelter four dressing rooms, six indoor practice pitches, and three outdoor practice fields. These areas make it possible to host back-to-back games on the same day. Furthermore, it includes a unique dormitory for 40 athletes in the indoor cricket academy, allowing rest and tests athletes for the best. The N.M.S is currently the only one to have eleven center pitches on the principal ground.

The Sardar Patel Sports Complex showing the stadium, practice pitches, swimming pools and subsidiary arenas (© India Times)

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Every facet of the stadium complies with international standards. Though discerned as snug but crowded, it manages structural safety and security at evacuation points effectively. It provides column-free spaces for un-hampered views of the field from any place in the stadium. Thus, the high ratio of general admission seating’s allows thousands of cricket buffs to sense occasion, vision, and sound. The tiered seating makes the same atmosphere possible for smaller, front-occupied events too.

The Narendra Modi Cricket Stadium – The seating arena – Construction Phase (© ArchEstudy)
Seating area of the Narendra Modi Stadium
The Narendra Modi Cricket Stadium – The seating arena – Completion (© Scroll)

Tension rings as earthquake resistors:

Ahmedabad, located in the level 3 zone of the seismic map, makes a light-weight roof compulsory for the Narendra Modi Stadium. Thus, to avoid negotiations during movement, the cable requires seismic alterations. Recommended by Walter P Moore, the executed light-weight and flexible tension-compression system put connections at ease. The assembly is pretty simple and involves the use of PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene), a Teflon coated woven fiberglass chiefly. The fabric stretches between circumferential inner tension rings and outer compression rings to provide stability. These rings hover between the bowl and the roof with the support of radial cable spokes. These are flexible and allow the members to drift during seismic activity, thus, preventing collapse. This roof, completed at 2.45 billion, assists movement and modernism while being structurally stable.

Cable spokes against the compression ring during the construction phase (©ArchEstudy)
The roof showing the tension-compression rings and the Teflon fabric (© Walter P Moore)

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Lighting of the Narendra Modi Stadium

The stadium highlights its uniqueness in terms of lighting too. Light Emitting Diodes (L.E.D) peek in from regular intervals as against the traditional floodlights. Besides being installed on anti-bacterial, fire-proof canopies, they cover about 30 meters of wide seating’s. Furthermore, in the future, the stadium aims to connect with the metro station by a sky walk to avoid traffic congestion. The Narendra Modi stadium has proved its prowess for regional grand-scale projects. It not only aces India’s top ten lists but is also at no.23 on the global 50 most influential list. N.M.S thus reflects the importance and grandeur of this project globally.

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