The new cathedrals
These gigantic buildings have a special place in the fabric of a city. A wide range of expertise is required to build these atypical structures. Meeting in Geneva on Friday, 28 March 2010, UEFA awarded the organisation of Euro 2016 to France. That country’s determination to modernise its stadiums was a major factor in ensuring the success of its bid. And France does need to catch up with the other European countries: according to the report of the Euro 2016 Major Stadiums Commission, issued in November 2008, France had the smallest average seating capacity of the five major football championship countries in Europe, at 29,155 compared to over 30,000 in Spain, over 35,000 in the UK, over 40,000 in Italy, and over 45,000 in Germany.
The French government therefore decided to provide resources. Nearly €2 billion will be invested in the construction of new stadiums in Lille, Lyons, Nice and Bordeaux and the renovation of a further eight (the Parc des Princes in Paris and the stadiums in Lens, Toulouse, Saint Etienne, Nancy, Saint Denis, Strasbourg and Marseilles). The government will make €150 million available, with the remainder to be provided by local authorities and private-sector partners. The market appeals to all the construction majors, for obvious reasons. “Stadiums are a bit like secular cathedrals today,” says Hugues Fourmentraux, Operational Manager, Western France of VINCI Construction France. “A stadium is a distinctive badge of a city. And our employees are always very enthusiastic about these projects, and very proud of them.”
On 18 July 2011, Stade Bordeaux Atlantique, the consortium made up of VINCI Concessions and the FAYAT Group, was declared preferred bidder for the PPP contract covering construction, operation and maintenance of the new Bordeaux stadium, which will be designed and built by lead company VINCI Construction France and the Fayat Group. The construction of a large stadium often attracts additional facilities (cinemas, restaurants, hotels, shops, sports halls, etc.), which contribute to the harmonious development and integration of new parts of a city linked to transport infrastructure and attract further companies
VINCI Construction draws on its wide array of business lines and expertise to deliver top capabilities in the development of urban projects involving sports and event facilities and their related infrastructure. The Group's specialised subsidiaries such as Soletanche Freyssinet can also build stadium roofs. Recent examples include the cable stayed roof of the BC Place stadium in Canada and the Puy du Fou Vélum in France.
Through their local roots, the Group's companies are attuned to regional issues and the needs of the cities carrying out these projects.