Rio Olympics Handball Arena to leave a legacy to Brazilian school children


25402 20X30 160430-036DDuring the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games the Future Arena will host the handball games and be packed with 12,000 spectators. When the games are over its structure will be dismantled and used in the construction of four state schools thus leaving a lasting legacy to the city of Rio de Janeiro. Three schools will be constructed in Barra da Tijuca and one in Maracanã - each accommodating 500 students - as part of a 178 million reais (£48 million/$77 million/€57 million) legacy project.


The brief for the handball arena was to build something that would contribute to the city of Rio beyond the 2016 Olympic Games. A first for the Olympics, the venue will make use of an innovative technique called "nomadic architecture", thus ensuring that even a temporary structure can leave a lasting legacy. Two thousand Brazilian school children will benefit from this initiative for many years to come. The arena will be dismantled and the components transported to four separate locations to be rebuilt into state schools. The main elements that will be reused are the roof, reconstituted timber rainscreen cladding, main structural steel elements and disabled ramps, which will form the shells of the four schools. The open nature of the rainscreen and external ramp that create a distinctive architectural language for the arena will be recognisable in the architecture of the new schools.


25402 20X30 160430-069DLopes, Santos & Ferreira Gomes Arquitetos , Oficina de Arquitetos, & Paulo Casé in collaboration with UK based AndArchitects provided the design for the handball arena. AndArchitects’ experience with six temporary buildings at London 2012 helped them jointly win the bid for this ground breaking project.



Careful thought was given to what materials and systems of construction would allow this transition with minimal wasted material. The schools were designed simultaneously with the arena. The grid for the floor plates and the roof were all designed from the outset for both buildings so that the panels on the façade and on the floor and roof could be easily relocated in order for the modules to work for both buildings. 

school visual

After the games, once the arena has been converted into schools, the students will be reminded of their schools’ role in the Olympic Games. One idea that is being reviewed is that the names of the stars of the Brazilian team are engraved onto the cladding of the building and these names will remain on the walls of the classroom as a source of pride and inspiration for the students.


The Future Arena has held test events from 29th April 2016.


Location - Rio Olympic Park- Rio de Janeiro, Barra da Tijuca
Type of project - Indoor sports hall  -12,000 seats – rebuilt as permanent 4 schools, each with 500 students
Client – Rio 2016
Consortium – (Rioprojetos2016) Lopes, Santos & Ferreira Gomes Arquitetos,  OFICINA de Arquitetos, AndArchitects, ,MBM Serviços de Engenharia e DW Engenharia





Lopes, Santos & Ferreira Gomes Arquitetos Ltda

Geraldo de Oliveira Lopes                            

Gilson Ramos dos Santos (co-ordination) 
José Raymundo Ferreira Gomes

Oficina.OA S/C Ltda
Gustavo de Oliveira Martins
Ana Paula Polizzo

Paulo Casé P/A
Paulo Hamilton Casé


In collaboration with And Architects temporary building consultant based in the UK Manuel Nogueira


Structural engineer - Metálica - Alpha Engenharia - Eng. Flavio Dalambert / Fundações e Concreto - SF Engenharia - Eng. Antonio Monteiro
M&E consultant- - DW Engenharia -Eng. Danilo Werneck / Eletrical - MBM Engenharia- Eng. Claudio Muylaert
Quantity surveyor - Arq. José Raymundo F. Gomes
Lighting consultant - L D Peter Gasper
Main contractor - Dimensional Engenharia
Appointment [competition] - October 2012
Project commencement – February 2013
Start on site date – April 2014
Completion date – November 2015
Contract duration – 19 months
Gross internal floor area -25.000m2
Total cost- R$ 146.038,668,67
Photographs - Leonardo Finotti


For further information contact:
Manuel Nogueira – AndArchitects
E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
T: 07810126043



Additional information