The eight stadiums, which are all situated in and around Doha, the capital of Qatar, will serve as the setting for the international football competition that takes place from November 20 through December 18.
The renovated national stadium of Qatar is one of them, along with several new buildings designed by British firms including Zaha Hadid Architects and Foster + Partners.
The building of these stadiums has been extremely divisive ever since Qatar was awarded the right to host the 22nd FIFA World Cup in 2010.
Over the previous ten years, more than 6,500 migrant workers have perished in the tiny Gulf state, according to the Guardian. According to Amnesty International, many of these fatalities are still unsolved.
The promise made by Qatar that the competition will be the “first carbon-neutral FIFA World Cup in history” has been criticized as being “far-fetched,” which has drawn criticism from the event’s organizers.
Find out more about each of the eight stadiums in Qatar for the 2022 FIFA World Cup below:
Lusail Stadium by Foster + Partners
The largest FIFA World Cup venue for 2022 was designed with inspiration from Islamic bowls and regional Qatari architecture, and its architect Foster + Partners termed it to a “golden vessel.”
The 80,000 seats of the Lusail Stadium are distributed over two tiers and hidden by a curved facade made of golden, triangular panels supported by a steel frame.
Arup, a structural engineer, and Populous, an expert in sports architecture, collaborated on the design of the arena, which will host the first match on November 22 and the championship game on December 18.
Find out more about Lusail Stadium ›
Stadium 974 by Fenwick-Iribarren Architects
In addition to the international calling code for Qatar, Stadium 974 is named after the quantity of shipping containers used to construct its stairways, kiosks, restrooms, and some of its façade.
The vibrant structure, created by Fenwick-Iribarren Architects, honors both the industrial past of its location next to Doha’s port and Qatar’s marine legacy.
A modular steel structure that was designed to be disassembled and reused is included alongside the containers, many of which were initially used to convey supplies to the site. The inaugural game will be played at the 40,000-seat stadium on November 30.
Find out more about Stadium 974 ›
Al Janoub Stadium by AECOM and Zaha Hadid Architects
The Al Janoub Stadium, a structure with the distinctive sweeping forms of its co-architect Zaha Hadid Architects, is located in Al Wakrah, south of central Doha.
The 40,000-seat stadium, which will play host to its inaugural game on November 22, was built in partnership with AECOM and includes a completely retractable roof to assist keep players and spectators cool.
While critics have previously likened its peculiar appearance to female genitalia, it is meant to resemble the sail of a dhow, a traditional fishing boat visible in the city’s harbor.
After the competition, the local Al Wakrah Sports Club football team will call the stadium home.
Find out more about Al Janoub Stadium ›
Khalifa International Stadium by Dar Al-Handasah
The national stadium of Qatar, which lies 10 kilometers outside of Doha’s city center, is the only existing structure that has been modified for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
It was recently renovated by its original architect Dar Al-Handasah to expand its capacity to 40,000 and meet FIFA criteria. The stadium is now known as the Khalifa International Stadium.
The Asian Games and the Arabian Gulf Cup were among the occasions the stadium hosted before the competition. The first World Cup match will take place on November 21.
The construction of a canopy that arches over the building’s roof and modern digital lighting are two further recent changes made to it since it was opened in 1976.
Find out more about Khalifa International Stadium ›
Al Bayt Stadium by Dar Al-Handasah
The tent-like stadium in Al Khor, which will host the football tournament’s inaugural game on November 20th, was also made by the multidisciplinary studio Dar Al-Handasah.
The Al Bayt Stadium is named after the traditional bayt al sha’ar tents that nomadic people in the area utilized. Over four stands, it has 60,000 seats inside.
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) woven fiberglass membrane is used to create its characteristic peaked shape, and it also features a retractable roof that compliments the stadium’s cooling systems.
After the World Cup, the stadium’s upper level of seating will be taken down and used to support the construction of athletic facilities in other nations before a luxurious hotel is built there.
Find out more about Al Bayt Stadium ›
Al Thumama Stadium by Ibrahim M Jaidah
A traditional gahfiya cap worn by men throughout the Middle East was the reference for the circular Al Thumama Stadium by Qatari architect Ibrahim M Jaidah.
Located to the south of Doha, the stadium has a circular form containing a concrete bowl with 40,000 seats for spectators and will host its first match on 21 November.
According to the architect, its unique design has a functional purpose too, protecting spectators from the sun “in a similar way to how the gahfiya is used to cover one’s head from the heat”. This will work in tandem with a cooling system powered by solar energy.
A boutique hotel is also planned to be built in its upper tier following the event, with rooms facing onto the pitch.
Find out more about Al Thumama Stadium ›
Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium by Pattern Design and Ramboll
Pattern, a UK architectural studio This ornamental stadium on the outskirts of Doha was created by the design and engineering firm Ramboll to act as a “marker of your exit and return to or from the desert.”
Its elaborate metal front, which is what gives Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium its name and is reminiscent of traditional Qatari facades known as Naqsh, contrasts with the sturdy concession booths that surround it and make allusion to the nearby sand dunes.
The open-air pitch will be artificially chilled, much like all other tournament locations, to assure the comfort of its 40,000 spectators and players. Here, the first game begins on November 21.
Find out more about Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium ›
Education City Stadium by Fenwick-Iribarren Architects and Pattern Design
Dubbed a “diamond in the desert”, the Education City Stadium is the eighth and final venue for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar. Its first match is on 22 November.
The stadium’s nickname refers to its facade, which is composed of a diamond-like pattern that takes its form from traditional Arabic architecture. It is designed to deflect strong sunlight and can be illuminated at night.
After the games, there are plans for the venue to be converted into a sports hub for the Education City district where it is located, with its top tier of seating removed to make room for university classrooms and event spaces.
Find out more about Education City Stadium ›