arup & david chipperfield unveil arena santa giulia


arup and david chipperfield‘s berlin office are developing a stadium for the 2026 milano cortina olympic games with an elliptical shape inspired by amphitheaters. the sports and cultural venue will form the centerpiece of milan‘s new santa giulia neighborhood in the southeast of the city. named ‘arena santa giulia’, the stadium will have a 16,000-person capacity and is set to be complete by 2025.


‘we are very pleased to have been invited to develop the design, along with our partners arup, for the arena in santa giulia,’ said david chipperfield. ‘we believe that this will not only be an important venue for milan but that the building and the new piazza will contribute to the physical quality of this important development. we look forward to seeing it become a new destination in the beautiful city of milan.’

david chipperfield designs oval shaped stadium for milan's winter olympics
images © onirism studio



a modern take on the amphitheater


arena santa giulia will be realized at the southern end of a large rectangular plot, creating a 10,000 sqm piazza to the north for social interactions and outdoor events. the stadium is raised on a podium that covers almost the entire site. visitors can access the complex via a wide flight of steps as well as an entrance cut into the podium at street level.


david chipperfield architects looked to the archetype of the amphitheater for the elliptical shape of the building but added metallic materials and dynamic forms for a modern reinterpretation. the architecture is articulated by three ‘floating’ rings separated by glass bands. during the day, these rings will be characterized by shimmering aluminum tubes while LED strips will light the building up at night.


towards the piazza, the rings project irregularly, giving the building its dynamic form. the hard materiality of the podium and the arena is counterbalanced by organically designed green spaces with trees that extend down the staircase, reminiscent of a green hilly landscape.

david chipperfield designs oval shaped stadium for milan's winter olympics
external steps connect the arena to the street



inside the arena, there are two tiers above the parterre level as well as a level with lounges and sky boxes. all seats are accessible via spacious lobbies at each level, as are catering and service facilities. the necessary car parking spaces are located within the podium as well as in a multi-story car park that evolves from the podium, closing off the site to the north.


the scheme also integrates sustainable design strategies with measures to minimize the consumption of resources and CO² emissions and photovoltaic systems on the roof, which will cover most of the building’s energy use.

david chipperfield designs oval shaped stadium for milan's winter olympics
the architecture is articulated by three metallic rings



milano santa giulia


located just a few kilometers from the city center, the new milano santa giulia district will be connected to italy’s high-speed train network and motorway. evolved on the basis of a masterplan by foster + partners, the neighborhood will comprise residential buildings, buildings for education, commerce and leisure as well as an extensive park. 


after its life as an olympic venue, arena santa giulia will be used for large concerts, sports events and festivals. outside of event hours, the wide outdoor areas will also provide a new opportunity for social interactions for people from the neighborhood as well as from the whole city.

david chipperfield designs oval shaped stadium for milan's winter olympics
the stadium will become the centerpiece of milan’s new santa giulia neighborhood



project info:


name: arena santa giulia

location: milan, italy

client: CTS eventim group
architecture: arup with david chipperfield architects berlin

project start: 2021
completion due: 2025
capacity: 16,000 (12,000 seats, 4,000 standing)

visualizations: onirism studio