phoenix stadium in cite soleil, haiti, by carlos zapata studio phoenix stadium in cite soleil, haiti, by carlos zapata studio
feb 06, 2013

phoenix stadium in cite soleil, haiti, by carlos zapata studio

‘phoenix stadium’ by carlos zapata studio, cite soleil, haiti

all images courtesy of carlos zapata architects and project phoenix



cite soleil, haiti, was declared a united nations red zone as early as 2007, an area that NGOs and united nations staff are advised to avoid due to security risks. a self-consuming mix of violence and poverty have tended to ravage the area; compounded with the 2010 earthquake, this section of port-au-prince remains one of the most impoverished and overlooked areas in the world. characterized by makeshift housing, few certainties survive save for the incredible power of determination– and an undeniable love of soccer.


project phoenix  is a non-profit organization that represents a consortium of forces behind the colloquially named ‘phoenix stadium.’ underwritten by the likes of delos and the clinton global initiative, the stadium and forthcoming professional league aim to bring hope, create jobs and encourage investment in ‘red zones’.aside from being the first professional soccer stadium in haiti, the project is a testament to a self-sustaining model of philanthropy, one that builds longevity for a community through infrastructure, with a pointed nod to poetry. new york-based carlos zapata studio has taken on the design pro-bono and used the injured landscape to build ‘hills’ that overlook the soccer field. the architecture rises from the blighted landscape, transforming the physical remnants of nation-wide trauma, literal rubble, into a viable building material. This is an opportunity to revitalize cite soleil by investing in the capacity of athletics to change the physical and mental makeup of a ravaged community. robert duval, president and founder of fondation l’athletique d’haiti (LADH), deems that the key to building haiti is investing in youth. the 12,000 seat stadium will be home to the 10-team league at LADH, a program that helps underprivileged youth understand the transformative power of self-discipline and teamwork through sports. in addition to using labor and materials from haiti, the stadium is set to create at least 500 jobs from the start and continue to grow into a multi-phase 15 acre complex. the soccer academy will be bolstered by elementary and middle school dormitories as well as edible gardens, a small lake containing tilapia and a composting/recycling plant. the overarching goal is to create a self-sustainable supportive environment that gives the public a chance to participate in a project of nation-changing proportions.






the present practice field of the LADH



the current field was once covered with rubble from the earthquake



aerial view of the stadium.

image © carlos zapata studio



interior rendering of haiti’s first professional soccer stadium

image © carlos zapata studio



the space will be able to seat 12,000 spectators, but expand to hold an additional 10,000 people

image © carlos zapata studio


models show the hilly landscape of the field-stadium



the new soccer field will also include ancillary facilities



space is molded from the geometry of the land, quite literally using rubble from the 201o earthquake to make hilly seating for the spectators



the organic design makes the most use of the existing landscape while negotiating with the built form 



‘phoenix stadium’ will rise from the ground

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    architecture news