Forsyth Barr Stadium

Completion date
Sports & Recreation
Architecture, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Urban Design

This project provides New Zealand’s first all-weather spectator events facility. It uses range from sporting and recreational to cultural and educational, so the design solution needed to sufficiently flexible.

Of particular importance was connecting the new stadium with the University of Otago, enhancing the role of the university within the community. The design extends and integrates University of Otago facilities including a gymnasium complex, academic space, and support facilities. This connection is further strengthened by considered landscape design.

An interconnected sequence of landscaped quadrangles bridges the gap between Forsyth Barr and the University of Otago, while providing a feature common to many other famous universities.

The building is veiled in an ETFE envelope which creates the world’s first fully fixed roof over a natural turf stadium. This veil allows the building to take on a chameleon character with the skin responding to the changing moods of the day and night. During the day it will shimmer from dawn to dusk with the sky contrast subtly altering the appearance of the facade.

The project involves substantial landscaping configured around two main public spaces - an inward focused stadium quadrangle, and an outward opening university quadrangle. On one hand a sense of openness and permeability encourages community interaction and accessibility, while on the other a sense of containment adds to the drama and intensity of staged events.


  • 2011 NZIA Southlands Architecture Award - Public Architecture
Jeremy Benseman Senior Architectural Technician - Senior Associate Auckland
Chris Boss Senior Architectural Technician - Associate Principal Auckland
Jerome Buckwell Principal Auckland
Phone09 366 9626 Mobile021 133 9111 Save Contact
Chris Dale Registered Architect - Senior Associate Auckland
Marko den Breems Managing Principal Auckland
Phone+64 9 367 0442 Mobile+64 21 393 418 Save Contact
Jonathan Goss Senior Interior Designer - Senior Associate Auckland
David Millard Architectural Technician - Associate Auckland
Martin Walton Registered Architect - Associate Principal Auckland
Mike Weatherall Architectural Technician - Associate Auckland
Joy Zhang Architectural Graduate Auckland
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