Hong Kou Stadium in Shanghai, China. Right image courtesy Wikimedia.

Hongkou Stadium



We provided structural design for the roof of the 35,000-seat Hong Kou Stadium, the first professional soccer stadium in China to be covered with a long span fabric canopy.

Undulating Roof Structure
The roofline rises 50 meters at its highest point as it undulates around the field. The stands are covered by a canopy of Sheerfill, a Teflon-coated fiberglass membrane produced by Chemfab. The 22,500 square-meter canopy is divided into 22 bay panels, which are supported by a flying-beam cable system anchored to the main roof structure.

The main roof structure consists of 22 cable-stayed cantilever trusses, stabilized by interior and exterior hoop trusses, that form a saddle-shaped ring. These trusses cantilever from a minimum of 32.2 meters to a maximum of 55.6 meters. Each is anchored at the back to tapered, exterior concrete superstructure columns.

Applying Floating Compression
Our team developed the layout of the flying-beam fabric roof structure using tensegrity concepts to fit with the arrangement of the cable-stayed steel trusses of the main roof’s supporting structure. Each flying-beam unit consists of two upper-ridge cables; four bottom tie-down cables; and a horizontal, flying steel-pipe beam to resist roof live load and wind-pressure force. A valley cable between each unit resists wind-suction force. At the roof perimeter, the fabric panels are held taut between the main steel roof masts.

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