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FNB Stadium

nasrec-3The design of the stadium was selected from a series of concept designs. The calabash, or African pot, designed by architect Bob van Bebber, was selected as being the most recognisable object to represent what would automatically be associated with the African continent for the World Cup.

The stadium was the key venue for all the major events, such as the opening and closing ceremonies and the first and final matches.

Resembling a calabash, the traditional African vessel used for cooking and holding food, the stadium sits on a raised podium. It has a spectacular appearance, especially at night when it is illuminated and looks like it is sitting in a pit of fire.

The outside of the stadium is made up of glass re-enforced concrete panels in a selection of eight earthy colours and two textures to reflect the shades and textures of a traditional calabash. The façade is articulated by 10 vertical slots which are aligned geographically with the nine other host stadiums in the country and the Berlin stadium in Germany, the hosts of the 2006 World Cup.

The upper roof is cantilevered from an enormous triangular spatial ring truss, and is covered by a membrane in a colour similar to that of mine-dump sand.
Pedestrian promenade and bridge link

The completed promenade is approximately 350 metres long and forms the main link between the expo centre and the stadium. Built at a cost of R82-million, the design aims specifically to allow for ease of pedestrian movement between these two anchor points. People crossing the bridge have a beautiful view of the stadium, the Johannesburg skyline and the famous Telkom Tower.

In the middle of the bridge, transparent safety glass has been built into the walkway, allowing pedestrians to watch the trains and buses below. Red and yellow paving bricks, resembling spouting flames, further enhance the fire theme, and have been used heavily.

Arriving at the transport hub, the southern end of the promenade begins with a square and sculpture that forms the gateway towards the stadium and the expo centre. A central meeting point where taxis, Rea Vaya buses, tourist buses and trains all converge, it is spacious and aesthetically pleasing.

A 25m wide bridge with ambient lighting takes pedestrians across the widened Landbou Road and the railway tracks on to a series of ramps that meander gently down to the stadium. The ramps allow for rest and respite with ample water points, shaded seating areas and sculptures.

Just before reaching the stadium, the visitor is greeted by the small amphitheatre, which has a capacity of 500 people. Large paved and grassed areas act as an open air plaza, which was very successful during the World Cup.

Transport hub

The completed hub is a designated visitor public transport node. It provides for taxi, bus and rail transport and a Rea Vaya drop-off and pick-up point for spectators. The hub also has public ablutions and a kiosk, with stairs directing visitors to the stadium.

There is ample parking space for public transport vehicles such as taxis and buses.

The Metrorail Nasrec Station consists of a light aluminium bubble suspended over the railway lines. It should cater for further line extensions and tie in with network upgrades by the South African Rail Commuter Corporation (SARCC), the asset owners.

Two Rea Vaya stations serve passengers on the expo centre side of the precinct. These stations are used mainly to transport passengers to and from Soweto for big sporting events. Another Rea Vaya station, Soccer City Station, is located on the main trunk route on the Pat Mbatha Bus Way. Besides normal Rea Vaya services, the station is also used to get spectators between the stadium and the inner city when major sporting events take place.

With the upgrades completed, the total capacity of the transport hub is approximately 23 280 passengers per hour.