Tottenham Hotspur Stadium Tour

Earlier this month, Senior Design Manager Caleb Kung and Design Manager Mamta Joshi joined our client Populous on a learning tour of Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, home to Tottenham Hotspur Football Club and a state-of-the-art sports and performance facility. Plan A and the architectural team were keen to witness the technical accomplishment of coordinating a 60,000-seat venue in a highly urbanised neighbourhood in North London, to discover the scale and atmosphere of performers’ journeys in the footsteps of Harry Kane’s and Beyonce’s, and above all to discern the motivations and negotiations that resulted in this exemplar in sports architecture.


With the advent of American sports globally, the end-client had a firm intent to accommodate both football and American football to attract sports events across a spectrum. It is impossible however to understate the engineering ambition behind the retractable pitch, which horizontally slides the natural lawn pitch through a pocket into the ground level carpark. This exposes a floor on which arena and concert events can be held and is able to accept the artificial lawn for NFL matches. At the heart of sports architecture is the value of versatility, warranting immense expenditures for denser and more diverse event schedules.

Exploring the labyrinth of the lower floors we encountered the changing rooms, medical and training spaces and an impressively fitted out press conference room. General admissions spaces were robust and spacious, with ample gathering areas doubling as avenues of celebration- featuring the longest bar in Europe. By scenic lifts one ascends to more prestigious club and box areas. Here are the hallmarks of luxury: more space, great views, heated cushioned seats, and a whiskey room. It is however the “fuselage” lounge, a cantilevered box intended as the head sponsor’s club, that drove home the prominence of elite hospitality in spectator sports, something that emerging stadia internationally have come to observe and emulate.

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