2014 FIFA World Cup Stadia Update

When we talk about the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, one of the first questions that comes to mind is: “Will Brazil be ready?” More specifically: “Will the stadia be ready on time?” writes MEI’s João Frigerio.

One year before the FIFA World Cup, however, there’s the FIFA Confederations Cup. Initially planned to happen in six host cities, the tournament that brings together the six continental champions plus the last world cup winner and the home team might be organised in only five or even four cities. FIFA’s decision will be announced on 8 November 2012.

The shortlisted cities are Rio de Janeiro, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Fortaleza, Salvador and Recife. The last two – especially the latter – risk not to have the stadia ready on time. As FIFA’s general secretary Jerome Valcke said during his recent inspection visit to Brazil - the Confederations Cup risks not having six host cities.

The Arena Pernambuco, located in São Lourenço da Mata, just outside Recife, has only 64% of the construction work concluded. The Fonte Nova stadium in Salvador has 74% of the works completed.

The portal2014.org.br website, a project by Sinaenco (the national architecture and engineering union), follows the progress of each of the 12 arenas scheduled to host the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The ‘Portal da Copa’ is an official site by the federal government, and it also brings updates about the works in the stadia.

Here is a summary of the updates:

Fortaleza – the capital of the State of Ceará is the most advanced. 91% of the work is done and it is expected that this will be the first stadium to be officially ready. Fortaleza will host games of the Confederations Cup and will host a Brazil match in the group stage of the World Cup. The arena will hold 67,000 and has an estimated cost of R$520m.

Belo Horizone - At the end of September 2012 the New Mineirão had 84% of works completed and is on track to host games of the Confederations Cup. The stadium, which is being rebuilt, will have 64,500 seats and has an estimated cost of R$695m. Belo Horizonte is racing against Fortaleza to have the privilege of being the first host city to inaugurate a FIFA World Cup venue. Both are scheduled to open in December 2012.

Brasilia – Scheduled to host matches of the Confederations Cup, the venue in the capital of Brazil has 76% of the works completed. One of the most expensive venues, with an estimated cost of nearly R$815m, the 71,000-seater stadium is due to open on February 2013.

Salvador – The New Fonte Nova Arena is 74% ready. The stadium planned to have 50,000 seats at a cost of R$592m is scheduled to host matches of the Confederations Cup in 2013 and six matches of the World Cup.

Rio de Janeiro – An invitation to tender to admin the operations of the legendary Maracanã stadium were set to be released on Monday 22 October. The stadium that is currently managed by Suderj will be entirely run by a private company (or companies) that will receive a concession to run the rebuilt venue. 70% of the planned work has been done and reopening is scheduled for February 2013.

Recife (São Lourenço da Mata) – With only 64% of the construction work done, the stadium near the Capital of Pernambuco risks being scrapped from the 2013 Confederations Cup. The venue will have 46,000 seats had an estimated cost of R$500m.

Sao Paulo – The Corinthians Stadium has over 50% of the planned work done. The new privately held arena will host the opening match of the World Cup. The 65,000-seats arena will cost over R$820m and is scheduled to open on December 2013.

Cuiabá – with 600 days to go until the opening of the FIFA World Cup, the Arena Pantanal had 47% of the construction work concluded.  The stadium will receive only four FIFA World Cup matches – all during the group stage and has an uncertain future, since professional football is underdeveloped in the state of Mato Grosso. The stadium will cost R$420m and will host 44,000 people during the World Cup – 18,000 seats can be removed after the event.

Curitiba – The expansion works on the Atletico Paranense stadium is only 45% done, and completion is scheduled for July 2013. The arena is being expanded to hold 41,000 people and it will host four group stage matches of the World Cup. 

Manaus – The Arena da Amazônia is only about 45% ready, and although initially it was scheduled to open on June 2013, it is unlikely that all will be finished before December 2013. The stadium will have a capacity for 44,000 and will cost approximately R$532m.

Porto Alegre – One of the three privately owned arenas to be used in the FIFA World Cup, the Beira Rio stadium, home of SC Internacional, has been under refurbishment work while still being used during the national championship. So far only 38% of the projected work has been done and the club will be forced to host its matches at a different venue in 2013 in order to finish work by December 2013.

Natal – The Arena das Dunas, in the capital city of Rio Grande do Norte State, is running worryingly late. Only about 30% of the work has been completed and it is understood that the host city could still be scrapped from the FIFA World Cup. Currently it is scheduled to host four matches of the event – all during the group stage.

Additional information