Cable Roof for Ciutat de Valencia Stadium
The need to adapt the Levante UD stadium to the new regulatory requirements of La Liga and UEFA – sports lighting, sound system, scoreboards and zenithal camera – along with the objective of improving the spectator comfort experience was the premise for the new roof for the existing stadium designed by IDOM; a structure designed to accommodate the necessary equipment and protecting the spectators from changeable weather. For this propose, a lightweight membrane cable roof with spans up to 40 m has been chosen, which in addition to creating a visually attractive architectural concept, generates a distinctive structural design.
The roof design is derived from the bicycle wheel principle, with two inner tension rings and an outer compression ring, supported by slender steel columns that are adjacent to the existing structure and closely adhere to the original stadium footprint, a requirement of the brief. The ability to work independently of the existing structure and with minimal intervention were the key factors in choosing a roof of this type. Therefore, to avoid possible interferences with the original foundations, a system based on micropiles that cross the existing footings without introducing additional loads on them was selected. The design of the interfaces between the cable-roof and the supporting structure, which are connected by means of sliding spherical bearings, required a detailed assessment process.
All these constraints, together with the considerably tight schedule to minimize interruption of the football match timetable, posed a major challenge to both the structural design and construction management, which was successfully overcome, even with the constraints inherent during the Covid-19 pandemic.