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Football Stadium in Lausanne, Switzerland

featured in sb magazine 2/2021
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Focussing on football

published in sb 2/2021

The new football stadium designed by :mlzd und Sollberger Bögli Architekten AG is located in the Northern part of the City of Lausanne, at the point where the city’s dense urban fabric gives way to the more open countryside. The sports infrastructure at the new “Centre sportif de la Tuilière” comprises nine football pitches, arranged in two rows, in addition to an athletics facility with a training centre. The stadium picks up on the idea of the slightly offset rectangular pitches, taking it even further. Positioned at a slight angle to the training pitches, the stadium square is orchestrated to form the city-side entry point to the sports campus.

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021_107835.

photo: Ariel Huber

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021_108345

photo: Ariel Huber

The new football stadium is intended exclusively for football matches and major events, with no peripheral uses. Its limited deployment and its location on the outskirts of the city permit a design focused fully on the stadium as a sports facility. With its distinctive, unforgettable structure, it serves as a carrier of identity and memories. Its architecture emotionalises with the steep stands bringing spectators right up to the action on the pitch and the low roof amplifying the background noise of the chanting fans. The architecture thus contributes in no small way to boosting the team’s home advantage through its structural measures. The building, history and identity of “FC Lausanne-Sport” are all to merge into a single whole.

Good to know

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021 plan

Lausanne, Switzerland

City of Lausanne


CH – 2503 Biel/ Bienne

Sollberger Bögli Architekten AG
CH – 2503 Biel/ Bienne

Structural Engineering & Facade Engineering
Dr. Lüchinger+Meyer Bauingenieure AG

Project Teams

:mlzd: Pat Tanner, Daniele Di Giacinto, Alain Brülisauer, Andreas Frank, Claude Marbach, David Locher, Adrian Widmer, Camille Schneider, Eliane Lehmann, Brigitte Ballif, Delphine Kohler, Robert Ilgen, Johannes Weisser, Benjamin Minder, Julia Wurst, Pascal Deschenaux, Magdalena Haslinger, Tobias Cebulla, Claudia Schmidt, Jonatan Anders, Natascha Kellner

Sollberger Bögli Architekten AG:
Ivo Sollberger, Lukas Bögli, Bernard Luisier, Silas Maurer, Kevin Fuchs, Josué von Bergen, Patrick Wüthrich

:mlzd and Sollberger Bögli Architekten AG

Ariel Huber Photography

Opening match
29. November 2020

Construction costs
CHF 80 million

(EUR 73 million)

Open architecture

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021_108204

photo: Ariel Huber

Folding back the four corners of the stadium enables the design to be tailored to the confined space on the site. The ingenious corner solution permits a generous free flow of visitors around the building at ground-floor level, linking the stadium square to its surrounding areas. At the same time, it creates a covered public space to serve as a go-between, reconciling the outside with the inside and the city with the football stadium. The corners simultaneously serve as entrance areas, providing initial glimpses of the pitch.

The folded back corners also lend the stadium the impressive, unmistakeable and even iconic look of a convex vessel, indicative of its use and what lies within. This distinctive shape additionally has a role to play in the building’s statics by the corners exerting tensile stress on the ring girders running around the top edge of the stadium, imparting rigidity to the four outside walls. In the plinth area, the four corners are linked by a single-storey concrete band. This puts the finishing touch to the aesthetics of the stadium’s outer shell. In functional and visual terms, this “curtain wall” separates the ancillary functions on the ground floor, which include catering, circulation and lounge zones, from the surrounding area, integrating them in the building.

Resonance box

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021_107841

photo: Ariel Huber

Inscribed within this outer shell is a second, inner shell, shaped by the geometry of the stands. “Mouth holes” cut out of the stands provide access to the innermost zone. The space between the two shells is like a resonance box, amplifying the happenings on the pitch: a place of anticipation, exchange and encounters. On the narrow sides of these spaces, the gaze is drawn to the stepped inner sides of the corners. These provide further access from the entry level to the walkway around the top, thus generating additional functional value.

The walkway is formed by the tensioned girders mentioned above, connecting the four corners of the building. The change in design at this point, from heavy concrete in the lower section to a slender steel structure above, highlights the walkway in architectural terms as well. Especially during major events without spectator segregation, it invites visitors to access their seat via different routes gaining new perspectives.

Inside lines exude tranquillity

Football Stadium Lausanne sb 2 2021_107285

photo: Ariel Huber

It is the pitch and the protagonists acting on it that take over the dramaturgy here. Nothing which could cause distraction was added, even the seating rows run horizontally round the corners. The vomitories emerging from the inner shell blend into the picture almost completely calm. Even the business and VIP zones are matched to the geometry of the seating. Everything is in servitude to the stadium’s purpose: the game.


Fragmented glass curtain

On the outside, the geometry of the beams and the underside of the stands dominate the stadium on three sides. The west side, by contrast, houses the main stand with its specific uses. The various cloakrooms, press and VIP zones are visible over three floors through a filigree glass skin. Gentle creases between the vertically configured strips of glass enhance the impression that this façade is just a light glass curtain. Its fragmented reflections break up the vast scale of the building.

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