As the 2018 World Cup approaches, we architects can already look ahead to the next tournament. The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar offers the most exciting opportunity in stadium design for decades, with the competition relying on an almost entirely new footballing infrastructure. Several world-renowned designers have submitted proposals, and the following set of newly released time-lapse videos show the progression of each stadium, as we approach four years to the competition’s start. Emphasising the structural shells, the videos highlight a sometimes overlooked facet of stadium design. To materialize the effortless magic of the initial renders - like those produced by Foster + Partners and Zaha Hadid Architects - phenomenal levels of engineering and problem solving are required, and in the early stages of construction, this becomes the visual focal point. Read on to see the beauty of these structural marvels, but be warned - you may develop World Cup fever.
2022 World Cup: The Latest Architecture and News
The history of the Qatar Peninsula—or Catara, as first labeled on an ancient map drawn by the Greco-Roman polymath Claudius Ptolemaeus—dates back to the Paleolithic Age. By the 1930s, the tiny Gulf state was struggling to maintain its position as the center of the pearl trade, but soon after, in the 1940s, it found itself at the forefront of economic growth and progress after the discovery of its vast oil reserves. Today, Qatar is the world’s richest country per capita; its capital Doha an ever-growing crop of shiny high-rises, with occasional buildings by the world's most sought-after architects thrown in for effect, its skyline flecked with tireless cranes, and its suburbs strewn with bulldozers, machinery, and endless mounds of displaced sand.
Seen in these photographs by Manuel Alvarez Diestro is a record of the country's impatient race towards an extravagant desert dream—but perhaps it can also be read as a subtle nod towards Qatar’s sheer determination to forge ahead, despite being steeped in controversies and crises during recent years.