Salt Lake Stadium, also known as Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, stands as an iconic sporting arena located in Kolkata, India. Renowned for its colossal size and historic significance, this stadium has carved a distinct place in the world of sports and entertainment.
History of Salt Lake Stadium
|Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan
|Salt Lake Stadium
|Mohun Bagan AC, East Bengal Club, Mohammedan Sporting Club
|Notable Events Hosted
|– 1985 FIFA World Cup qualifiers
The Saltlake Stadium, officially known as Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, is more than just a stadium; it is a living monument to the passion and history of Indian football. Nestled in the heart of Kolkata, this iconic structure has witnessed countless moments of sporting glory and continues to inspire generations of athletes and fans.
The story of the Salt Lake Stadium began in the early 1970s. With a growing interest in football and a lack of suitable playing facilities in Kolkata, the need for a modern stadium became apparent. The construction began in 1978, and by 1984, the colossal structure, initially known as Yuva Bharati Krirangan, was ready to welcome the world.
A Stage for International Events:
The Saltlake Stadium was inaugurated in grand style with the Jawaharlal Nehru International Gold Cup in 1984. Since then, it has hosted a plethora of prestigious international tournaments and matches, including:
- 1985 FIFA World Cup qualifiers: A significant moment for Indian football, as the national team battled for a place in the biggest international tournament.
- Super-Soccers (1986, 1989, 1991, 1994): This invitational tournament brought together top international teams, showcasing the best of global football to Indian fans.
- 3rd South Asian Games (1987): The Salt Lake Stadium became the centre stage for regional sporting excellence as athletes from South Asian countries competed in various disciplines.
- 1996 Nehru Cup: This international football tournament witnessed some thrilling matches and served as a platform for young Indian players to showcase their talent.
- 2010 AFC Cup Final: The stadium hosted the final match of the Asian Football Confederation’s second-tier club competition, a major event in Asian football.
- 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup final: This historic event marked the first time India hosted a FIFA tournament. The Salt Lake Stadium witnessed the crowning of a new U-17 world champion, and millions of Indian fans were captivated by the magic of the game.
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Salt Lake Stadium Capacity and Architecture
The Salt Lake Stadium, officially known as Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan, has a current seating capacity of 85,000. This makes it the second largest non-auto racing stadium in the world, and the largest in the Indian subcontinent.
The stadium boasts an impressive and unique architecture. It has an elliptical shape with three tiers of seating arranged in a bowl-like structure. The roof is cantilever, meaning it extends outwards without the need for support columns, providing unobstructed views of the playing field from every seat.
Additional Architectural Features:
- Astroturf surface: The playing field features a modern Astroturf surface, providing optimal playing conditions for various sports.
- Electronic scoreboards: Two large electronic scoreboards are located on opposite sides of the stadium, ensuring clear visibility for all spectators.
- Floodlights: The stadium is equipped with powerful floodlights, allowing for matches and events to be held even after sunset.
- Press and media facilities: Dedicated areas are provided for press and media personnel, enabling them to comfortably cover events.
- Athlete facilities: The stadium includes dedicated facilities for athletes, such as training rooms, locker rooms, and a medical center.
The Salt Lake Stadium has undergone several renovations throughout its history to improve its facilities and amenities. The most recent major renovation took place in 2011, which included:
- Installation of new seats and improved legroom
- Upgraded lighting system
- Enhanced sound system
- Modernization of restrooms and concessions areas
The large capacity and impressive architecture of the Saltlake Stadium have contributed significantly to its iconic status. It has hosted numerous prestigious sporting events, including international football matches, cricket games, and the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup final. The stadium’s capacity allows it to generate a vibrant and electrifying atmosphere, creating an unforgettable experience for both players and spectators.
Beyond its sporting significance, Salt Lake Stadium holds cultural importance in the hearts of Kolkata’s residents. It serves as a hub for community gatherings, fostering a sense of unity and pride among the locals. The stadium’s vibrant atmosphere during matches and events reflects the city’s deep-rooted passion for sports and entertainment.
Salt Lake Stadium stands not only as a magnificent architectural marvel but also as a symbol of Kolkata’s rich sporting heritage and cultural vitality. Its grandeur, historical relevance, and multifaceted utility make it a cherished venue, contributing significantly to the city’s identity and serving as a testament to the power of sports and communal gatherings.
FAQ on Salt Lake Stadium
Question 1: What is the official name of the Salt Lake Stadium?
Answer: The official name of the Saltlake Stadium is Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan. However, it is commonly known as the Salt Lake Stadium.
Question 2: Where is the Salt Lake Stadium located?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium is located in Salt Lake City, Kolkata, India.
Question 3: When was the Saltlake Stadium built?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium was built in 1984.
Question 4: What is the seating capacity of the Salt Lake Stadium?
Answer: The current seating capacity of the Salt Lake Stadium is 85,000, making it the second largest non-auto racing stadium in the world and the largest in the Indian subcontinent.
Question 5: What is the surface of the playing field?
Answer: The playing field features a modern Astroturf surface.
Question 6: Who built the Saltlake Stadium?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium was built by the Government of West Bengal.
Question 7: What were some of the major events hosted at the Salt Lake Stadium?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium has hosted numerous prestigious events, including:
- 1985 FIFA World Cup qualifiers
- Super-Soccers (1986, 1989, 1991, 1994)
- 3rd South Asian Games (1987)
- 1996 Nehru Cup
- 2010 AFC Cup Final
- 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup final
Question 8: How did the Salt Lake Stadium get its nickname?
Answer: The stadium was originally named Yuva Bharati Krirangan, which translates to “Youth Sports Arena” in Bengali. However, it became popularly known as the Salt Lake Stadium due to its location in the Salt Lake City area of Kolkata.
Question 9: What is the architectural style of the Saltlake Stadium?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium has an elliptical shape with three tiers of seating arranged in a bowl-like structure. This design is inspired by the traditional Indian stadium known as the “maidan.”
Question 10: What are some of the unique architectural features of the Salt Lake Stadium?
Answer: The Salt Lake Stadium boasts several unique architectural features, including:
- A cantilever roof that extends outwards without the need for support columns.
- Two large electronic scoreboards.
- Powerful floodlights.
- Dedicated facilities for press and media personnel.
- Modern athlete facilities, such as training rooms, locker rooms, and a medical center.