Arena Dragão Caixa

The Dragão Caixa Arena was the building which was missing to complete the Antas urban project, conceived by Risco between 1999 and 2003. Its construction is of particular urban significance because it completes the East side of the area where it meets the VCI highway, while at the same time closing the “ring” surrounding the stadium (Rua FCP), thereby giving it a more urban character. The “bean-shaped” site is a residual space resulting from the road infrastructures that delineate it. It measures 170m in length, and spans 45m at its widest point. Pedestrian accesses to the pavilion are located on Rua Futebol Clube do Porto, but the actual grounds lie between 15 and 23m below this street’s level, which meant that the arena level had to be “raised” and built on stilts – much like a palaphytic structure – since there was a large void between the arena’s level and the pre-existing plot. The location and shape of the plot were decisive to the project’s conception, since these were particularly averse to designing a professional sports pavilion with a capacity for two thousand spectators. The main challenge was to align the design of the arena and the respective stands with the levels for the numerous entrances, and the functional demands (separating players, media, VIP’s and spectators) associated with high performance sports events. The pavilion is comprised of a main room with the respective foyers and spectator facilities, a VIP lounge that can be used independently, the athletes’ facilities (changing rooms etc.) and an administrative area. The clear internal organization, the easily recognizable shape, the superior quality of the chosen materials, the flexibility of the spaces, and the economic benefits of a sustainable approach, result in a building of reference for Futebol Clube do Porto and for the city of Porto. Services Provided: Risco was responsible for the concept, scheme and detailed design, construction drawings, special projects coordination and technical site supervision.


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