MOSCOW, March 7. /TASS/. History going hand in hand with top-notch technologies makes unique Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, which is one of 12 stadiums across Russia selected to host matches of 2018 FIFA World Cup, Alexei Sorokin, head of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) said on Wednesday.
Luzhniki was named by international experts as the best 2017 football arena, according to Stadiumdb.com web source. The best stadium was selected by a special commission, consisting of a jury of architectural experts, who cast their votes independently of the public vote. World’s best football arenas were evaluated based on three criteria: Architectural Value, Functionality and Innovation.
"This is an excellent, modern stadium that has been recently revamped, fully rebuilt, preserving elements of its former looks with overhauled technologies," Sorokin said.
"Of course, it is unique in many respects - this is an excellent blend of memory, history and modern technologies. It is convenient and comfortable for watching football matches," the LOC director general said.
The St. Petersburg Stadium was also named among the ten best football arenas of 2017, according to the experts.
"The scale and historical importance of the Luzhniki Stadium gave a highly demanding challenge to the authors of its renovation project," Maria Sipinska-Malaszynska, the only female member of this year's jury of architectural experts, was quoted as saying in the statement on Wednesday. "Located on historical urban axis, the stadium currently is and surely will be read as an important touristic landmark."
The Luzhniki Stadium was built in the Russian capital more than half a century ago and underwent reconstruction works ahead of the upcoming FIFA World Cup. In addition to hosting other fixtures, the stadium will be the venue to the opening and final matches of the world football championship.
The refurbishment of the Luzhniki Arena began in 2013 as part of the country’s preparations to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The stadium is designed to boast the capacity of up to 81,000 seats for spectators during the global football championship.
It was the second grand-scale reconstruction of the stadium, originally built in 1956. The first major repair works on the stadium took place in the run-up to the 1980 Summer Olympic Games in Moscow.
Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 FIFA World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.
The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 aforementioned cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital.