By Andy Sambidge
2022 organisers react to claims from contractor that it is too expensive and 'unsustainable'
Organisers of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar said on Tuesday they have no intention of scrapping plans to air-cool stadiums after one of their contractors suggested it was too expensive.
John Barrow of UK architect Populous said earlier at an international football arena conference that air conditioning was too pricey and "notoriously unsustainable".
While a pledge to build air-conditioned stadiums to beat the summer heat in Qatar was part of the Gulf state's winning bid last year, Barrow said he was now looking at other options.
But Nasser Al Khater, the 2022 World Cup’s communications director, told Bloomberg: “All our commitments that have been made to FIFA that are in the bid book are still going ahead as planned.
“There’s no plan of scrapping cooling technology whatsoever.”
Barrow said in comments published by Associated Press that the planned Sports City stadium can be kept cool by shading seats and traditional Arabic methods for ventilation.
Populous wants to wind towers to create fan-like air movement inside the 47,000-capacity stadium, AP said.
"I think you can be more clever. It is about air movement, moisture in the air and it is about temperature at the right time of day," Barrow said. "If we get it right ... that is the way ahead."
"We are doing away with all the air conditioning kit that is going to cost a fortune to run," Barrow added.
In June, Hassan Al Thawadi, Qatar's 2022 World Cup Committee's secretary general, said the first of 12 stadia planned for the tournament would include a state-of-the-art cooling system to combat the impact of the summer heat for players and fans.
He added that the first of the stadia would be completed in 2015.
In July, it was reported that Populous believed the Sports City Stadium could cost more than $2bn to build.
This compares to the $1.28bn it cost to build the new Wembley Stadium in London which is judged one of the world's best new stadia.
Complete Air conditioning is not a good carbon print as the current trend shows. Alternate is use cool air blowers over and thru the side of the stadiums, offsetting the heat to penetrate below or through, same as we have as air curtains to prevent heat from entering a cool atmosphere.
Other alternates are to re-design a structure of copper tubes passing over and around the stadium, flowing with liquid nitorgen or other coolants, which could convert hot air into cold air, without the neccisity for complete aircondition.
I am not a scientist, but these are ideas, my small brain came up with.
-Qatar says no plan to scrap air-con in World Cup stadia -
It is nonsense to suggest that the cooling of the stadiums are "Notoriously unsuitable" , not only is it suitable but it is also possible with the technologies that exist today.
Why would a stadium in Qatar costs so much more to build than Wembley? Construction costs in Qatar must be much less expensive than the UK so where is the 2+ billion dollars going?
i request mr.borrow to sit in a stadium without air conditioning in qatar for 10 min during summer. I recommend in this case to build 47000 beds hospitals too.
30 degre c is already perceived high for people who live in moderate climate, moreover, the "traditional Arabic Methods" are not implemented anymore in current CLOSE envelope buildings in GCC.
There is no way around airco. The air temperature in this region itself is high; cooling with an unprocessed 45c air temperature does nothing; even if airflow is increased.
But hopefully this will drive some R&D in current cooling technologies. There are tested and reliable inverter-air-cons on the international market (I think not here strangely) with an always-on compressor that can lead to 30% energy reduction if properly sized. Perhaps they can industrialise this and further optimise it for the stadium purpose.