The next big US project for Bjarke Ingels’ firm could be an American football stadium for the Washington Redskins. BIG has never designed a sports arena, although the firm is in the running to redesign Barcelona’s Camp Nou Stadium.
Bjarke Ingels Group is one of the
industries buzziest architecture firms, having made headlines last year when it was selected to design Google’s futuristic greenhouse-style headquarters campus in Mountain View, Calif. Locally, the firm is working with the Smithsonian on a 20-year master plan for museums on the National Mall. It has held a number of exhibitions at the National Building Museum, including a life-size maze, it created in the museum’s great hall.
Before signing a deal with Bjarke Ingels, Dan Snyder’s team considered other firms with more experience designing NFL stadiums, according to executives familiar with the selection process. Team spokesman Tony Wyllie did not return a request for comment on the selection. Daria Pahhota, a spokeswoman for Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), declined to comment. “We are working on an NFL stadium, but we can’t identify who the client is”, she said.
Details have yet to be released, however according to Sports Business Daily, the Practice’s Head of Communications, Daria Pahhota confirmed that BIG is working on an NFL stadium. The Redskins currently play at the 80,000-seat FedEx Field in Maryland. It is said that they are considering moving back to Washington DC or relocating to Virginia.
“We are building a soccer stadium. Our soccer team is going to be playing there in 2018, and after that, we are going to have an empty RFK Stadium”, said Mayor Bowser. “So my charge as a mayor is to make sure that we have a plan for RFK by that time“.
“The selection of Bjarke Ingels represented a very interesting and different kind of choice because of the firm’s splashy work on an assortment of other projects and recent foray into sports“, said Christopher S. Dunlavey, President of the D.C. based planning and architectural firm Brailsford & Dunlavey, which worked on Nationals Park.
“People involved in building stadiums are usually very reliant on the firms who have demonstrated a strong record in understanding sports sites”, Dunlavey said. “BIG is known very well for very innovative architecture and design, but they haven’t been known for that kind of expertise“.
As Redskins fans look to the future, there is a growing war of words whether the team will return to the nation’s capital to play their games.