Could Brazil’s World Cup Stadiums Be Made into Sustainable Housing?


fifahousing After billions of dollars were spent on constructing the 12 stadiums for the FIFA World Cup, which was hosted in Brazil this past summer, the stadiums now stand empty and vacant. In a country with large wage gaps, where the poorer populations are suffering a housing crisis, this has caused strife and anger. Even before the World Cup began, more than one million citizens were facing a housing crisis, and once the football tournament began, rent in cities became so expensive that many low class families were uprooted and forced out. While some of the stadiums are set to be refurbished for the 2016 Olympics, the rest currently remain unused.

But two architects who work for the group 1 Week 1 Project, Axel de Stampa and Sylvain Macaux, have developed an innovative plan to utilize the empty stadiums to provide sustainable housing to Brazilians living in the area. Their project, called Casa Futebol, aims to convert the stadiums into apartment-style homes for lower income families.

fifahousing2The design leaves the actual field in the centre of the stadium, which would allow for green space between the houses. This could be utilized to host soccer games on occasion, but also provide park space for families. The apartment units would be built between concrete pillars that form and hold together the stadium, which can be easily seen in the photos. Each apartment would be roughly 1,100 square feet, and provide enough room for a family of up to four to live comfortably. Roughly 20,000 units could be placed within the largest vacant stadium. The number and size of the units would vary depending on the specific stadium, and how exactly the different spaces could be properly converted.

There is currently little support or funding for this project within Brazil, which will make it difficult to take hold. Projects and ideas like this, however, are extremely important, as they provide creative and sustainable solutions to issues negatively affecting Brazil’s populations. De Stampa and Macaux are aware that this project could never actually happen, but are trying to make a point and raise awareness about the situation: sporting stadiums around the world often remain vacant after being used, when they actually have the potential to help citizens.

For information on this idea, you can check out their website and Facebook page.


Elizabeth DiCesare

Elizabeth DiCesare

Elizabeth is a writer currently based in Kitchener-Waterloo.

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