The architect of the new Monumental de River: “It is a huge and exciting challenge”




César Azcárate, architect of the Basque company IDOM, gave details of the transformation “unprecedented in South America”.


The Antonio Vespucio Liberti stadium, the legendary Monumentalis in full remodeling process. The mythical pitch Riverinaugurated in 1938, is undergoing a work projected by the Basque company IDOMa transformation “unprecedented in South America”he assured EFE the person in charge of sports architecture of this company, César sugarcoat.

César Azcárate, head of the sports architecture area at IDOM and who has already designed the new San Mamés pitch in Bilbao, explained that The great novelty of this intervention lies in modernizing and updating the installation to world standards, but without losing its essence. “Work in a Such a historical scenario with such an emotional charge is always a huge and exciting challenge”also admitted the person in charge of the projects for the new stadium of the San Lorenzo.

“In the stands, all the seats are renewed and new popular low-goal stalls are generated. New VIP boxes, hospitality areas and a restaurant with views of the pitch and the city are also created”Azcárate added. As for the capacity, the Monumental will go from just over 70,000 spectators to 81,000, “which will make it the largest stadium in Latin America that belongs to a football club”.

IDOM admits that this project has “much importance” for the company by offering the possibility of working “with one of the historic clubs in world football” with the added responsibility of changing the physiognomy of a “Mythical and sacred place for River fans” and also from the Argentine National Teamwho was proclaimed world champion in Núñez in 1978.

“Working hand in hand with the club and its leaders, our project is always respectful with the history of the stadium, with the fans and with the city of Buenos Aires. That historical and emotional charge means that certain aspects of the design must be analyzed by us much more attached to the place and local behavior patterns”, stressed the architect. For this, the Spanish company has the river advice and also from local architecture and engineering firms “that help us interpret and understand these small differentiating details regarding the issues of customs and more technical designs”.

“Then there are many other aspects that have to do with football, such as television broadcasts and technology that are already common to European football and that are somehow more global”, he detailed. Azcárate recognizes that “from a design point of view”, a remodeling involves greater complexity than a project that starts from scratch. “In a remodeling you have to take into account many more aspects, those of the existing and those of the new parts that have to be projected. But it also has its attractive part because you have to find a way to value what exists and the keys to improve and update what was already projected many years ago, trying to get the best out of what was already built”highlighted the architect.

The works to be carried out in the Monumental

The first works of the Monumental consist of the removal of the athletics track and lowering the level of the playing field by almost two meters thus generating a new lower stalls close to the pitch -which will be a hybrid with the latest drainage and ventilation technology- and complementing the oval typology of the stadium with new low rectangular grandstands.

It is anticipated the completion of the first stage in February 2023 and the end of the work, with one hundred percent of the operational services, in June 2024as announced a few weeks ago the president of River, Jorge Britoin the presentation of the plan.

What will be the two phases of the second stage of the works in the Monumental de River

PHASE 1

  • New lower lower grandstands: in Sívori, San Martín and Centenario.
  • Change of seats: removal of existing seats, waterproofing, new circulations and placement of new first-class retractable seats, quality according to FIFA standards, in San Martín lower, upper, middle and hospitality stands; Belgrano low top, middle, hospitality and boxes; Media centennial and boxes. A total of 17,157 new seats will be completed for this phase.
  • Press Sector: new desks in the middle Belgrano grandstand (247 seats).
  • New experience for match days: 30 boxes in Centenario media and a 700-square-meter restaurant 24/7 with views of the River neighborhood and the playing field, with new circulations and coverings.
  • New circulation and coverings in boxes: in the Belgrano grandstand.
  • New garages: new parking level and covered pedestrian access on the ground floor to the Stadium. 227 garages will be added.
  • Enlargement of the Paddock San Martín: new toilets and kitchen with views of the new single tunnel for the exit of the teams to the field of play. It will go from 200 to 500 square meters.
  • New referees’ locker room.
  • New anti-doping control sector.
  • Expansion of the gastronomic sector in San Martín media: improvements in the gastronomic offer on match days.
  • New audio system in the Stadium.
  • New Medical Department: on the ground floor of the Centenario grandstand.

PHASE 2

  • New Lower Lower Belgrano Grandstand.
  • Change of seats: removal of existing seats, waterproofing, new circulations and placement of new first quality retractable seats, according to FIFA standards, in lower lower Belgrano grandstands; Sívori media and boxes; San Martín, Belgrano, Centenario and Sívori high. A total of 40,565 seats will be changed, completing the entire Stadium.
  • 46 boxes in the Sívori grandstand: new circulations and coverings.
  • Execution of two more parking levels: 402 new garages, completing the five parking levels and a new pedestrian bridge on the upper level, with connection at the box level. It will have a final capacity of 1,141 cars.
  • New mixed zone: on the ground floor of the Belgrano grandstand.
  • New River Institute.

Source: EFE.

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