The 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa is less than one year away. Being perhaps the most important international competition in sports in the world, we would like to start featuring some of the stadiums that will host this magnificient competition.
Soccer City Stadium is located in Johannesburg and it was originally built in 1987. Among other important events, it hosted the first massive speech from Nelson Mandela after his liberation in 1990. However, it was completely renewed for the upcoming World Cup, becoming the stadium where the starting and the final game will be played.
Designed by Boogertman Urban Edge and Partners in partnership with Populous, it will allow for 94,000 spectators to enjoy the best soccer in the world. The design of the stadium was selected from a series of concept designs ranging from acknowledgement of Johannesburg’s disappearing mine dumps; the kgotla (defined by the tree) of the African city state; the African map as a horizontal representation, which included the roof as a desert plane supported on tropical trees set within the mineral wealth of Southern Africa; to a representation of the protea, South Africa’s national flower.
The calabash, or African pot, was selected as being the most recognizable object to represent what would automatically be associated with the African continent and not any other. The calabash, or ‘melting pot of African cultures’, sits on a raised podium, on top of which is located a ‘pit of fire’. Thus the pot sits in a depression, which is the ‘pit of fire’, as if it were being naturally fired.