Spurs reveal retractable pitch for Premier League and NFL games

A retractable pitch which will allow both English Premier League matches and American football to be played has been unveiled by architect firm Populous.

The elliptical stadium for London football club Tottenham Hotspur is a doughnut-shaped stadium with capacity for 61,000 spectators – an increase from the 36,000 seats of the club’s existing ground at White Hart Lane.

The stadium’s main feature will be a retractable pitch that rolls back to reveal a second playing surface, to accommodate possible NFL London-based franchise.

“Populous has always been a pioneer of new technologies,” explained Populous principal Christopher Lee.

“The world’s first sliding pitch allows each sport to play on its own dedicated pitch and provides perfect sightlines for their fans,” he said, adding that the firm drew on experience from designing a moving roof over Centre Court, Wimbledon.

Panels of perforated metal and glass will wrap the structure, while a hole in the centre will leave the pitch open to the air.

A single-tier stand at one end of the pitch will provide a bank of 17,000 uninterrupted seats, and is set to become the largest of its kind in the UK on completion.

“The new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium marks a new generation of stadia design,” said Lee.

“The seating bowl is designed to create an intimate relationship between player and spectator,” he continued. “Its 17,000 capacity single tier end stand – a tribute to traditional English football grounds – will be the largest in the UK, and will be the engine that drives the intensity and atmosphere in the new Spurs stadium. It will be like no other.”