Wembley National Stadium
Temporary Athletics Deck: Outline Specification
2. General Arrangement
3. Structural Design
5. Fire Performance
6. Construction Constraints
Appendixes (not reproduced)
The new Wembley National Stadium is designed
to allow for the accommodation of occasional major athletics events
by the installation of a temporary deck over the arena and the
lower parts of the seating bowl.
This outline specification describes the arrangement
of the platform and the type of works that will be required to
create an elevated athletics arena on a suspended deck as and
when required to temporarily convert the stadium for an athletics
event. This specification is not fully comprehensive of all technical
requirements. Some of these will depend on the detailed requirements
specific to each event which are likely to vary depending on the
needs of each event owner. Notwithstanding this, the overall scope
of work involved in creating the athletics deck is not expected
to vary substantially between different events.
2. GENERAL ARRANGEMENT
The athletics deck will be installed to create
an arena at a level approximately six metres above the level of
the permanent field level within the stadium. The athletics arena
will fill the area contained within the horizontal contour of
the lower seating bowl located six metres above the field level;
this is just below the level of the vomitories to the lower seating
bowl (see drawings in Appendices).
The athletics area will include the following:
a 400 metre eight metre lane running
track with 10 lane home straight on the north side;
a water jump for steeplechase events;
a grass infield area for throwing
events (javelin, hammer, discus, shot putt). This grass infield
will be used for football and rugby matches;
jump areas within the D-ends of the
running track for high jump and pole vault events;
throwing circles for hammer, discus
and shot putt within each D-end;
run-up tracks for javelin at each
two sets of long-jump tracks and
pits outside of the running track on the opposite side to the
a single set of long-jump track with
pits within the running track adjacent to the home straight;
access ramps to/from the changing
area at the permanent field level (B1) for athletes. These will
lead up to the start of the home straight and down from the finish
a wide vehicle access ramp to/from
B1 level on the south side of the arena to provide operational
access, marathon event access and parade access; and
access and operational area between
the outside of the running track and the edge of the arena.
All parts of the athletics arena shall fully
comply with the latest International Amateur Athletics Federation
(IAAF) standards with regards to geometric layout and configuration.
With the exception of the grassed infield area
and jump pits, all parts of the athletics arena, including access
and operational areas, shall be covered with a synthetic sports
surface approved for IAAF international events (Mondo or similar).
With the athletics deck installed a basement
area will be created beneath the deck at normal footfall field
level. This area will be partly used to provide access routes
to the ramps up to the athletics arena and also for some operational
accommodation for event use (eg marshalling of athletes, etc).
The deck construction shall be designed such
that at any given specific location, a three metre high headroom
can be created to accommodate operation and/or event facilities
such as operational or event control offices. Warm-up running
lanes may be incorporated into these areas which are likely to
be orientated to be parallel to the home straight of the main
The deck construction shall be able to accommodate
a vehicle access route five metres wide and with a 4.5 metre headroom
between large vomitories at football field level and the foot
of the vehicle access ramp up to the athletics arena. The vehicle
access route shall allow for the manoeuvring of an articulated
lorry to/from large vomitories and the vehicle access ramp.
The structural design of the temporary deck
shall comply with all relevant British Codes of Practice. The
structural system shall be able to accommodate localised sumps/depressions
and sockets in the athletics arena as required to accommodate
jump/pits, water jumps, pole vault equipment etc.
The platform shall be designed to withstand
all load effects induced from the following vehicles;
Vehicles up to and including 7.5 tonnes maximum
gross vehicle weight.
This will include three tonnes vehicles and
Group 2 fire engines.
The loading shall be derived in accordance with
BS5400 pt 2 and Highways Agency documents BD 37/88 "Loads
for Highway Structures" as modified by load reduction factors
within BD 27/97 "The Assessment of Highway Bridge Structures"
to convert to the required vehicle intensities.
The loading shall include:
(a) Uniformly Distributed Load (UDL) calculated
with reference to the loaded length and converted into a UDL per
area; in conjunction with a Knife Edge Load (KEL) converted into
a point load. These shall be modified to represent the desired
gross vehicle weight;
(c) Nominal Single Wheel Load; and
(d) Nominal Accidental Wheel Loads.
The minimum superimposed UDL that shall be used
in the design is to be 11 kN/m2.
The underside of the deck shall allow for a
0.25kN/m2 suspended service load for suspended services such as
lighting, signage, sprinklers, ventilation etc.
The deck shall be designed with a maximum deflection
of 1:500 for any span under any combination of imposed loads.
The deck shall be designed such that, with the
finished sports surface installed, there shall be no perceptible
bounce or vibration for persons running or jumping on the deck.
All parts of the running track shall comply
with the surface response requirements of the IAAF and specialist
sports surface suppliers.
4. SERVICES DESIGN
The entire athletics arena shall be laid out
to be level throughout without falls. The synthetic sports surface
shall be continuous without joints and so shall provide a continuous
Drainage of the athletics arena shall be achieved
through the use of a continuous drainage slot channel (Aco or
similar) of suitable size around the outside of the arena and
a drainage channel incorporated into the kerb around the inside
of the running track. The grass infield area shall drain though
the deck with water being collected to pass down onto the football
field area below.
The temporary athletics deck shall incorporate
provision for the installation of cables as required for specialist
sports timing and measurement equipment associated with the competition.
Cable conduits shall be provided beneath the sports surface to
allow for the installation of cables by specialist contractors.
Below deck services
The following services shall be incorporated
under the deck as appropriate to meet safety and operational needs:
fire safety equipment; and
5. FIRE PERFORMANCE
The temporary deck installation shall include
such provision as is needed to comply with fire safety requirements.
This may be achieved, for example, by the incorporation of a sprinkler
system beneath the deck.
In terms of construction constraints, two alternative
scenarios are envisaged for when the temporary athletics deck
might be installed:
Alternative 1: Stadium opens in Athletics configuration
In this scenario the temporary deck will be
installed before the stadium is first opened for use.
The part of the lower seating bowl terracing
below the level of the athletics arena will not have been installed
apart from on the north side over the players changing accommodation
area where the permanent concrete terracing and supporting steel
rakers will be in place.
Whilst the base formation level (compacted granular
fill) of the permanent arena will have been created, the final
construction build-up of the field will not have been installed.
In effect, apart from the player's accommodation area on the north
side, a level platform will be available beneath the entire extent
of the temporary deck.
Alternative 2: Stadium converted for athletics
from football/rugby configuration
In this scenario the temporary deck will be
installed after the stadium has previously been opened in football/rugby
The temporary deck will have to be installed
over the permanent terracing of the lower seating bowl on all
The programme for the installation of the temporary
deck will need to take account of the precise dates of the specific
event for which it is required. In general terms however it is
considered likely that any major athletics event would occur during
the month of August with at least one "warm-up" event
taking place beforehand, probably in June. The Athletics arena
will therefore need to be ready for use by the beginning of June.
The exact start date for the installation of
the deck will depend on the stadium events calendar at that time.
It is likely, however, that the start date would be during January
of the year in which the athletics event is to be held.
Assuming the scenario where the stadium is converted
to athletics from its football/rugby configuration, the anticipated
programme for the deck installation and use during any athletics
event year is as follows:
|Beginning January||Start deck installation works
|End February||Completion of Deck Structure. Load testing
|Beginning March||Start installation of Sports surfaces, jumps, grass infield etc
|End April||Complete installation of Sports Surface, drainage, arena edge barriers, fire protection etc
|Early May||Complete official track and arena homologation
|Mid/End May||FA Cup final and Football League Play-off Finals played on grassed area with track
|End May||Complete installation of timing equipment, initial testing
|End June||Warm up athletics event
|August||Main Athletics Event
|Beginning September||Start removal of temporary athletics deck
|Mid October||Removal completed. Installation of temporary football field (replaced by permanent field seeded in spring following year)