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Source : Business Line(The Hindu) dated 23-01-2014

The greenfield stadium coming up at Karyavattom here could be India’s answer to Bird’s Nest, the Beijing National Stadium; Allianz Arena, home of FC Bayern Munich; and the Maracana of Rio de Janeiro.
It is here that the opening and closing ceremonies of the 35th National Games, which Kerala is hosting for the second time, will unfold. The Games will kick off on January 31 and draw to a close on February 14.

Twin pitch

Being built to international standards, it is a multi-purpose stadium with facilities not only to host cricket and football, but also indoor sports. The north pavilion will be reserved for cricket while the east is for football.

Each pavilion will be equipped with facilities such as players’ lounge, gym, media centre and stock room, among others. The main attraction of the south pavilion will be a line-up of small malls and food courts.

Additional amenities

Apart from these, it is packed with a convention centre; dormitory; two different lighting lux levels for night and day events; a club house with restaurants; a VIP area; corporate boxes; and locker rooms separately for football and cricket.

Cricket fans have good reason to rejoice, said TC Mathew, Chairman, National Cricket Academy, hinting at the possibility of hosting an event here in the near future. There will also be indoor courts for squash, volleyball, table tennis and basketball. Two single squash courts; two volleyball courts; a 50-m and 25-m Olympic size combination pool and a kid’s pool will round up the list.

The stadium adheres to guidelines of both FIFA and ICC, respectively international football and cricket governing bodies. National Games organisers say the only other stadium capable of hosting both cricket and football is the one at Melbourne.

Karyavattom will have a seating capacity of 50,000 and can accommodate another 50,000.

PPP model

Estimated to cost ₹161 crore, the greenfield stadium will also be the first to be built on a private public participation model in the country. The 37 acres of land on which the facility is being built belongs to Kerala University, to which it will be handed over after 15 years.

The stadium alone occupies 30.5 acres; a 6.5-acre parking lot can accommodate 2,000 vehicles. The distance to the national highway bypass from the stadium is just 500 metres. The stadium is also friendly to the differently-abled sports fans with 500 seats reserved for them.

A unique feature of the stadium is a roof covering 50 per cent of the area as opposed to the standard 30 per cent in most stadiums. The roofing of the stadium is done with tensile fabric which offers UV protection and has anti-fungal properties.

In order to make the greenfield stadium ‘green’ in every sense, even sewage is processed to retain the greenery. Rainwater is being harvested for maintaining the lawns.

It strictly follows National Building Code Norms and has secured a clean certificate from the Environment Impact Assessment Authority, Kerala, as well as Kerala Pollution Control Board. Construction work is scheduled to be completed in time for handover to the 35th National Games Secretariat ahead of the opening ceremony.

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