Wave-like new stadium built for 2021 Asian Youth Games in Shantou



The wave-like stadium under construction for the Asian Youth Games in Shantou, Guangdong Province, China. /China Construction Eighth Engineering Division Corp.

The third Asian Youth Games will be held in the port of Shantou in south China's Guangdong Province. The city has been busy building new sports venues, including a wave-like stadium that's attracted a lot of attention for its distinctive design.

"Dancing waves" is how the designer describes the exterior design of this new stadium. It's being purpose-built for the Asian Youth Games which Shantou is hosting in November. Its design is both dynamic and challenging for the project's construction engineers.

"The size of every part of the arc-shaped steel structure is different. That requires us to process every piece precisely. The margin of error should not exceed 1.5 centimeters," said project head Zhang Hongchuan from China Construction Eighth Engineering Division Corp.

"Now we've finished the installation of all the steel structure and the biggest margin of error is only eight millimeters," he added.

The construction site, March 25, 2021. /CGTN

The stadium can seat 22,000 spectators. And it'll be the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies, and track and field events. Its location is only 50 meters from the South China Sea. That means it needs to be resistant both to the region's frequent typhoons and to erosion by salt in the atmosphere.

"We've used stainless steel materials and our patented special techniques to ensure the stability of the construction," Zhang said. "Through simulated wind resistance test, it proved that the building can resist level 18 gusts and level 15 strong winds."

The construction project started in 2019 but was suspended due to three typhoons and the COVID-19 pandemic. Now facing a much tighter deadline, more than 1,500 workers have been on shifts around the clock to ensure both quality and efficiency.

The construction company says this project will be finished by the end of May. Then other contractors will go on to install the security, firefighting, water and electrical facilities.

Shantou is one of China's special economic zones and a key port. It'll be the fifth Chinese city to host a continent-wide multi-sport event. And local officials believe the Asian Youth Games will help boost the local economy and attract more talent to the area.