In order to keep the fans field of vision clear, a bespoke cantilevered canopy was designed. The 2,700 sqm structure incorporates a series of five flying barrel-vault forms, protecting the 4,000 seats from the elements. In order to have the structure look light and airy, steelwork was greatly reduced, saving the client thousands of pounds, while allowing the structure to suit the poor ground conditions.
The 90m x 30m cantilevered canopy has no central columns offering fans an unobstructed view of the pitch. The new tensile structure made headlines at the British Athletics Grand Prix where some of the Worlds greatest track and field athletes competed. Covering the Grand Stand with fabric has increased ticket sales by attracting more families and big name stars. Gateshead has seen an exponential return on its investment.