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2022 World Cup stadium architect says A/C system wrong

The architect designing one of Qatar’s main 2022 World Cup stadiums says installing air conditioning in all the venues is the wrong approach.

The senior principal of Populous – architects of the London 2012 Olympic Stadium and also lead architects for Doha’s 2020 Olympic bid – John Barrow, says he is trying to persuade the Gulf state to adopt a better system for long-term use.

Qatar’s planned revolutionary cooling techniques underpinned their landslide 2022 World Cup victory last December.

Air-conditioned stadiums are planned to beat the searing 50-degree desert heat of the summer and the same argument is a key factor in Qatar’s bid to stage the 2017 World Athletics Championships, for which they go head to head with London in Monaco this Friday (November 11)

It has already been reported that the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Evaluation Report has criticised the effectiveness of the cooling technology that Doha plans to install at the Khalfia Stadium, the proposed venue if they are chosen to host the 2017 World Championships.

But London-based Barrow says air conditioning is too expensive and “notoriously unsustainable” when used on a large scale.

Populous has been commissioned to design the Sports City Stadium and Barrow says they can be kept cool far better by shading seats and using traditional Arabic methods for ventilation.

Although Qatar have been consistently playing up their sophisticated cooling techniques, Barrow favours an alternative wind tower system to create fan-like air movement inside the 47,000-capacity Sports City Stadium

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