Architecture of the Glasgow European Championships 2018 venues

Sports fans from all over the world will be heading to the the European Championships held in various Glasgow venues from August 2 to 12. Aquatic, cycling, golf, rowing, swimming and gymnastics events are being held in great venues, and here’s a look at some of them:

Royal Commonwealth Pool

The diving championships are being held at the Royal Commonwealth Pool.

The pool was originally commissioned in 1966 and designed by architecture firm Robert Matthew Johnson Marshall. Work started on it in 1967 and the pool was opened in 1970. In 1993, the conservation organisation DoCoMoMo selected it as one of 60 key Scottish monuments of the post-war period.

The pool was closed in 2009 and S & P architects was appointed to design its re-construction. The pool was stripped down to its shell and rebuilt to highlight some of its original features. A new 25-metre teaching pool was added. New changing rooms, café, reception areas and dive gym were constructed. The pool reopened in 2012.

SSE Hydro

The SSE Hydro will host the gymnastic events. This indoor arena was designed by architects Foster and Partners and opened in 2013. When not hosting sports events, the venue has been the stage for a number of events, including top class pop stars, Cirque Du Soleil and WWE wrestling.

Planning for the Hydro began in 2001 as part of Glasgow’s Queens Dock development. Foster and Partners was appointed as architects in 2004 with Glasgow-based Elphinstone as the chief developer and Lend Lease as the main construction company. Work did not start on the building until 2011. By 2013, the roof and inside seating had been completed.

A fire in June 2013 threatened to delay the construction, but the venue was completed on time and opened in 2014.

The SSE Hydro successfully hosted the 2014 netball and gymnastics events at the Commonwealth Games and is well prepared from the European Championship gymnastic events.

Tollcross International Swimming Centre

The main swimming events are being held at the Tollcross International Swimming Centre, which has two Olympic size swimming pools. The centre was opened in 1997 with just one pool and was expanded and refurbished in 2013 at a cost of £14m. The Glasgow City Council’s design team designed the refurbishment and Barr Construction were the main contractors. A second pool was added, and 1,000 extra spectator seats were installed to bring the number of permanent seats to 2,000. A further 3,000 temporary seats can be added for large swimming events.

The centre has a heat retention system which covers the pool when not in use and this reduces energy costs.

A major project of the refurbishment was the construction of 78 metre x 7.5 metre x 4.2 metre trusses that weigh 52 tonnes. The trusses support the roof and enabled the original support columns to be removed.

Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome

The venue for the track cycling events is the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome which is part of the Emirates Arena.

The Velodrome was designed by Ralph Schoeman. The velodrome circuit is made from Siberian Pine and has room for 2,000 spectators.

The Velodrome cost £133m to build and opened in 2012. Named after Olympic gold medal cyclist Sir Chris Hoy, it is the official home of Scottish Cycling and the Scottish Governing Body for cycling. As well as hosting events, the Velodrome is a base for cycling performance development. The training facilities are available for all ages of cyclists and the centre encourages disabled people to develop their cycling skills.

As well as the Velodrome, the arena complex has a gym, sports hall, spa, fitness studios, and hospitality suites. There are Five-a-Side Football pitches outside the arena.

Golf courses

The European Golf Team Championships are held at the iconic Gleneagles PGA Centenary Course. The Gleneagles Hotel opened in 1924. Donald Matheson, the general manager of the Caledonian Railway Company has the idea of building a large country house hotel. He envisioned it as looking like a castle surrounded by its own golf course. Matheson said:

“Guests will travel on our trains, to stay in our hotel, to play golf on our courses.”

There were originally two courses, designed by James Braid known as the Kings and Queen’s courses. In 1928, a third nine-hole course was constructed. This was known as the Wee Course, and in 1980 was lengthened to a full 18-hole course. In the early 1990s, Jack Nicklaus designed the fourth course, Glendevon, which was renamed the PGA Centenary Course in 2001 and this is the course where the European Golf Team Championships are being held.

Outdoor water events

The rowing championships and the Triathlon are being held at Strathclyde Country Park in North Lanarkshire. Temporary stands are being erected by the loch to give spectators a prime view of the rowing action.

The Open Water Swimming venue is Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park, which has some of the most beautiful scenery in Scotland. The start and finish of the 2.5km course are located at Drumkinnon Bay, which is a natural stage that provides good views for spectators.

A temporary swimming pool

Scotstoun Sports Campus is the venue for synchronised swimming. A purpose built temporary competition pool is being built at the campus tennis centre. This 25 metre x 20 metre x 3 metre pool will be filled with 330,000 gallons of water and holds approximately 300 spectators.

The decision to split the main swimming events between the Tollcross Centre, diving at the Royal Commonwealth Pool and synchronised swimming at the Scotstoun Sports campus will provide opportunities to broadcast more live events.

Everything is ready

Glasgow has first class venues where events of the 2018 European Championships will be held. All the Glasgow venues are ready for the European Championships, with around 3,000 athletes expected to compete and many thousands of spectators looking forward to the sporting events. Aquatics, cycling, golf, gymnastics, rowing, triathlon and swimming events are being held in Glasgow, with 1,500 athletes competing in Berlin for the 2018 European Athletics Championships.

Posted by Mark
July 18, 2018

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