Image: Athletics Complex
Image: Athletics Complex

Athletic Sports Complex Qazaqstan

  • Location:

    Astana, Kazakhstan
  • Project year:

  • Category:

    International competitions
  • Type:

    Athletic sports complex
  • Scale:

    9,0843 Hа
  • Built-up area:

    22 477 m2
  • Building area:

    33 873, 8 m2
  • Seating capacity:

    7000 spectators
  • Stage:


The athletic complex in Nur-Sultan is one of the vivid examples of the use of fundamental knowledge about the fine arts in architecture. Spectacular silhouette, rich texture and nuanced colour scheme with bright accents create an image that can be attributed to a work of art.

The critical feature of a painting is its illusory nature, the creation of a three-dimensional space on a plane. The building’s design implements the artistic illusion techniques to its` large surfaces to reflect the dynamism of athletic sports. 

The building envelope looks moving and plastic due to the choice of materials, perforation angles and sizes, and the lighting strategy. The clear spatial rhythm of the lamellas is a metaphor for breathing or pulse. Meanwhile, the sharp, precise edges of the faces represent the strength or vitality. The same principle was used for the interior to create a festive atmosphere and adopt the visitor’s mood to the event. Moreover, it has also served the navigation purposes within the building.

The composition is the final key feature of a painting - finding the right balance and ensuring the architectural aesthetics at any angle. 

The Athletic complex is sited between streets of Turan and Bukhar-Zhyrau in Nur-Sultan. It was designed and approved in 2017 by both the client and local planning authorities. The project is sited in the cluster of sports centres such as covered hockey arena “Barys”, covered football stadium “Astana Arena”, covered ice stadium “Alau”, cycle track “Saryarka”, and a wrestling centre completing soon.

The athletic complex has the capacity of 7000 watchers. It has three storeys and occupies 156,50м х 147,63м. The programme includes both closed competitions and public training and athletic contests.

The buildings have a complex spatial structure, and it has to comply with strict regulations and norms of IAAF and the local construction legislation. Consequently, it has created the need to review the existing precedents with the similar structural, constructional, and spatial challenges. Also, we were interested in integrating the structure into the interior design.

We have visited the covered athletic stadiums such as National Indoor Arena in Birmingham, Beijing National Stadium, Atakoy Athletics Arena in Istanbul. During the building analysis, we have also considered internal zoning and spatial connections. As a result, we have corrected the entrances for the visitors, jury, and athletes. The primary zones of occupation, training, and the contests were designed according to the international standards of IAAF. We were using Kazakhstan's building regulations for the engineering that impose stricter rules. 

The unique constructional scheme of the building was adopted according to the initial architectural concept. We have also considered different options for the building skeleton among metal frames and monolithic reinforced concrete.

A mixed scheme was adopted for the work to ensure fire safety requirements and reliability of the building as a whole. The tribunes and the ground and first floors are made of reinforced concrete.

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