Inauguration of renovated Thialf Ice Arena to be held in Heerenveen

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A project to renovate the Thialf Ice Arena in Heerenveen in the Netherlands (designed by ZJA Zwarts & Jansma Architects) has, according to venue officials, put the focus firmly on athletes and the in-arena experience.

In the renovated ice arena, which will be inaugurated on January 27 by King Willem-Alexander, athletes have access to fast ice and an impressive 400m lowland track. Innovation and sustainability also play an important role at the Thialf. Moreover, the temperature and humidity are easy to adapt to specific requests and needs.

The in-arena experience is enhanced via the use of blended white and blue colors, and the transparent promenade surrounding the competition area. After a two-year renovation project, Thialf can lay claim to being the Netherlands’s fastest and most modern lowland ice arena.

The promenade is the connecting element of all arena functions. During events, visitors can access all the stands via this promenade, which also features serving points and public meeting places. A 1,312ft-long glass wall separates the promenade from the competition area, with all areas of the venue overlooking the ice – giving top-level sport a central position and enabling interaction between top athletes, recreational athletes and the public.

The promenade isolates the competition area from the unpredictable outside weather and allows for better control of the indoor climate. Moist air, brought in by wet coats, is channeled back outside. This creates climate segregation via an air curtain between the public and competition areas. Thialf has different climate areas within the ice rink, stand, and promenade, which can be managed separately.

Thialf is able to provide for its own energy requirements thanks to 5,000 solar panels – the largest sunroof on a stadium in the Netherlands. In addition, use of underground heat and cold storage means that a large amount of energy is saved. The ice arena also makes use of energy efficient LED lighting which produces little heat and is extremely well insulated.

For the design of Thialf, which was commissioned by Heddes Bouw & Ontwikkeling, ZJA worked in close cooperation with a construction consortium of Heddes Bouw & Ontwikkeling, Croonwolter & dros, Warmtebouw and Day Creative Business Partners.

Image credit: copyright Roy Klompmaker

January 25, 2017

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