The new Sports Hall of Lamezia Terme, designed by Vittorio Grassi Architetto and Partners, is located in a strategic central position, between the Tyrrhenian and the Ionian coasts of Calabria in Italy, along Highway n.280, known as “of the two seas”.
The Sports Hall, covering an area of 8,000 sq m on a site of 5 has, will have a capacity of 4,000 seats for sporting events that can be expanded to 5,000 seats at concerts, conferences and other events.
The project guidelines were to optimise the visibility and proximity of spectators to the playing field, the separation of accesses dedicated to the public and athletes, the functionality of the gyms and accessory spaces for everyday use as well as the energy and acoustic performances of the building. The entire complex has been specifically conceived and designed with particular emphasis on international sporting events for athletes with disabilities.
The liquid and asymmetrical form of the building, which is reminiscent of a local shoreline rock, was born from the idea of a lightweight structure to meet seismic requirements and an aerodynamic volume to take advantage of prevailing winds for natural ventilation. A ‘stone’ polished by the sea and winds in which we find references to the natural surroundings.
The roof connects the ground between the square in front of the entrance and the surrounding embankment raised to 5 m from ground level. Thanks to a net mesh made of thin steel elements and a triple outer translucent membrane in ETFE, its appearance is constantly changing under the influence of daylight light and night lighting, during the evening events. This solution, with constant pressure air pillows, maximizes natural light, reduces heat gains during summer months and heat losses in winter and thereby overall energy consumption.
The lightness of the building is also evident in the structure of the terraces, designed as closed rings, but with rampant stairways, that add a dynamic element to the composition. Accesses to the playing field are designed on the corners of the stands in order not to remove seats and maintain visibility and to avoid disturbing the athletes during sports performance.
The double height foyer and the upper ring are glazed and transparent so as to leave a glimpse of the activities inside the building and the view of the beautiful landscape.
The Sports Hall also fits in with the overall masterplan of the ‘City of Sports’ on adjacent land, which is a significant social and cultural development for the region.