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Signature roof installation at All England Lawn Tennis Club

CGI of view towards Newstead Road of the All England Lawn Tennis Club's Somerset Road covered courts project (Hopkins Architects)

City populations are currently unable to attend sporting events due to Covid-19 lockdowns and the sports industry continues to be severely impacted by the pandemic. Future Cities Forum is preparing an important discussion forum on the future of sport in the UK and across the world. What will happen to investment plans for new stadia, sports arena-linked developments and what will be the fall-out from Coronavirus on the regeneration of cities?

Construction has continued in the UK, pushed on and supported by the government to 'build back better'. Winter will give way to summer and sporting events may return to include spectators albeit with social distancing. So with the future ahead of us, it is interesting to note recent architectural developments for sporting venues.

Cundall reports that the new signature roof at the All England Tennis Club's Somerset Road project is being lifted into place. The double-curved roof steelwork consists of a series of seven ladder-framed tied aches, which will contain glazed rooflights to provide natural light to the court. The frame is linked by a series of beams of varying curvature that form the distinct shape of the roof to satisfy playing requirements on the indoor courts below.

The steelwork has been manufactured across a number of locations nationwide and successfully brought together and erected on site over the space of 10 weeks. Erection required very careful consideration of sequencing to ensure proper transfer of the compression forces in the arches to corresponding tension in the tie rods to ensure no inadvertent loading was applied to the supporting structure. This required a complex and carefully planned arrangement of propping and craneage.

Cundall is providing structural and civil engineering and BREEAM services on the redevelopment of Somerset Road Courts. Alongside Hopkins Architects, Cundall is working for Willmott Dixon to deliver this project for AELTC.

The next step is to install the roof decking over the top, before installing the internal curved timber ceiling. The project is due for completion in late 2021.

Meanwhile Twelve Architects has designed a 60-holiday home Escapade Silverstone development that will look directly over the race track at Silverstone in Northamptonshire, home to the British Grand Prix.

Matt Cartwright, Founding Director of the architects practice has described how the holiday homes would allow for access to driver-focused facilities and the opportunity to use the track. There will also be a clubhouse with restaurant, bar, swimming pool, sauna, gym and racing simulation rooms.

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