Ravenscraig Regional Sports Facility

  • Ravenscraig Regional Sports Facility building
  • Ravenscraig Regional Sports Facility courts
  • Ravenscraig Regional Sports Facility football pitch

1 / Introduction

United once again, the successful team of BuroHappold and Populous have delivered the state-of-the-art Ravenscraig Sports Facility which rises from the ashes of the former Ravenscraig steelworks site, and forms part of one of the largest regeneration projects in Europe. The facility will serve the community and provide a training ground for competitive athletes in Scotland, and is capable of hosting local, regional and national sporting and leisure events.

The brownfield site has been transformed by the undulating architectural design creating some interesting and unique challenges for our engineering team, despite budget restrictions. Old basements and steel waste remaining from the site’s former function, and the inclusion of a full size indoor football pitch,yielded some innovative and sustainable solutions.

Ground investigations by our team revealed that construction of piles through the surface obstructions would be costly. We developed a foundation solution using local demolition and compaction and backfilling of voids which allowed ground bearing foundations to be used which were both sustainable and cost saving.

The functional stepped profile of the building enabled the inclusion of north-facing rooflights and fully glazed end walls to provide daylight into the spaces below. Restricted by both the stepped building profile and a tight budget, a detailed three dimensional analysis of the cladding, secondary and primary structures allowed an efficient structural frame to be designed. The standardised and repetitive nature of this design helped minimise fabrication and erection costs. The standard components have low embodied energy, and their use allows the building structure to be adapted or re-used to meet future demands.

Ensuring safety in the event of a fire was a major task for our team as the football hall far exceeded the maximum fire compartment size permitted by building regulations. Through early consultation with Building Control and the Fire Brigade, our fire engineers designed a smoke heat exhaust and ventilation system using computational fluid dynamics which demonstrated that the stringent building regulations could be met. This meant that not only could the full size indoor football pitch be accommodated but also gave North Lanarkshire Council the option of utilising the space as an exhibition or concert venue.

Successful partnerships and a willingness to ‘think outside the box’ as well as consultation with stakeholders has ensured that BuroHappold has delivered this successful sports facility on time and on budget.


Key facts

  • Brownfield site
  • Stepped profile enabled installation of north-facing rooflights
  • Fully glazed end walls

The Project Details

Client: North Lanarkshire Council

Architect: Populous

BuroHappold services: Building services, structural engineering, ground engineering, fire engineering, sustainable and alternative technologies.