At Polytan, we are well known for our sports facility design and construction abilities, encompassing everything from local sports clubs to premiere sporting complexes. We have a strong interested in the history of sports arenas, as it provides inspiration for our own innovative design projects.
To enable us to share our passion with everyone, we have put together a list of the top 10 most impressive sports megastructures around the world.
The Colosseum of Rome
To begin our list, we start with the Colosseum of Rome, an iconic amphitheatre that has stood since A.D. 80 and was built to seat 50,000 spectators. It’s design and engineering is breathtaking and it could even be flooded for aquatic events. This is truly an inspiration for all stadiums that have been built over the intervening years.
Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York
With a seating capacity of 22,547, the Arthur Ashe Stadium in NY is less than half the size of the Colosseum. Built in 1997, the stadium was renovated in 2016 with the addition of a retractable roof. It’s also worth noting that the installed court surfaces were produced by our parent company APT!
National Stadium in Taiwan
This extensive multi-purpose stadium was completed in 2009 and has a seating capacity of 55,00 spectators. It’s designed in a semi-spiral shape to emulate the body of a dragon and was the first stadium in the world to integrate the use of solar power.
Providence Park in Portland, Oregon
The original sporting complex was built in 1893, expanded in 1926, renovated in 1956 and expanded again in 2019 to reach a seating capacity of 25,218. Home to the Portland Timbers and Portland Thorns FC, it has held many World Cup FIFA matches.
Rungrado 1st of May Stadium in Pyongyang
Located in North Korea and built in 1989, the Rungrado 1st of May Stadium has the largest seating capacity in the world, estimated to be 114,000. It was originally built with a capacity of 150,000 in mind, but a remodel in 2014 reduced this number to its current level.
Estadio Azteca in Mexico
The official home of the Mexico national football team, this stadium is at an altitude of 2,200m above sea level and has a seating capacity of 87,523. Opening in 1966, the Azteca Stadium has hosted numerous international events.
MCG in Melbourne
Known as the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the MCG was built in 1853 with a capacity of 100,024. It’s the largest stadium in the Southern Hemisphere and the second largest cricket ground in the world by capacity.
Wembley Stadium in London
Completed in 2007, Wembley Football Stadium was built on the grounds of the previously demolished stadium and has a seating capacity of 90,000. It hosts football, rugby league and rugby union matches, as well as boxing and American football.
Madison Square Garden in New York
The original stadium was built in 1879, however the current Madison Square Garden (the fourth stadium to bear the same name) was built in 1968 (with numerous subsequent renovations) and has a capacity of 20,789.
Maracanã Stadium in Rio
With a seating capacity of 78,838 this arena was built in 1950 with an original capacity around 150,00 but was reduced to its current capacity after numerous renovations. It hosted the 2016 Olympics, however after falling into disrepair following this event, it has since been renovated.