Dezeen Magazine

Populous-designed Cathedral stadium for Inter Milan and AC Milan

Populous-designed Cathedral stadium set to replace Milan's San Siro

Football clubs Inter Milan and AC Milan have announced that the iconic San Siro will be replaced by a stadium designed by architecture studio Populous.

Named the Cathedral, the new stadium in Milan will be home to Italian top-tier football clubs AC Milan and Internazionale Milano, also known as Inter Milan. It will replace the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, which is widely known as the San Siro and has been home to the clubs since 1926.

Populous designed Cathedral stadium for Inter Milan and AC Milan
The Cathedral stadium will replace the San Siro

Designed by Populous, the form of the new stadium was informed by two of the city's best-known buildings, the Duomo di Milano cathedral and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele shopping arcade.

The 60,000-seat venue will have a rectangular shape and be surrounded by vertical fins. These fins will extend outwards from the stadium to support a glass wall that will enclose a space described by the studio as a "sunlit galleria".

Inside, the stadium's bowl was designed to be the "most intimate in Europe", by placing fans as close as possible to the pitch.

The stadium will be topped with photovoltaic panels and rainwater will be collected from the roof and reused.

Concourse of Milan stadium
It will be surrounded by a concourse informed by the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele

"The Cathedral will become one of the most iconic stadiums in world football," said Populous managing director Christopher Lee.

"It will create a world-class, modern, and truly bespoke home for the legendary clubs of AC Milan and FC Internazionale Milano and form the beating heart of a new civic district," he continued.

"It will be a stadium for all Milanese to enjoy for generations to come that is true to the city and honours its heritage. A stadium of Milano and for Milano."

Stadium in Milan
The seating bowl was designed to be the "most intimate in Europe"

The Cathedral will be built alongside the existing San Siro, which will then be demolished, as part of a redevelopment of the stadium's site.

The area will be turned into a pedestrian-only district, with existing car parking moved underground and topped with more than 110,000 square metres of green space.

The San Siro is one of the world's best-known stadiums. Designed by architect Ulisse Stacchini and extensively remodelled for the 1990 World Cup by Ragazzi and Partners, it was described by designer Fabio Novembre as "probably the most well-known place in Milan".

Its replacement has been controversial, with architects, critics and heritage bodies critical of its demolition.

Last year Italian architect Angelo Renna proposed turning the stadium into a coronavirus memorial by filling it with 35,000 cypress trees.

The renders are courtesy of Populous.