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A major project to enhance the bet365 Stadium, home to Stoke City football club, was completed in 2017. The all-seater venue can now accommodate 30,089 fans. In addition, glass balustrading from Q-railing has been added to its disabled bays. The club, in close consultation with AFL Architects, opted for the Easy Glass Pro system, which provides unobstructed pitch views. This system also delivered on quality, safety and ease-of-installation. It is a perfect match for any stadium.
The south-east corner of the stadium was the main focus of the expansion work. Where there was previously a gap in the stands, 1,800 new seats were added. The stadium also now has 5 new disabled bays – 2 of them located high up in the stands, and the other 3 right next to the pitch. In both of these locations, and in existing bays, further provision was made for disabled people. That included wheelchair lifts and super-risers. But it was just as important to maintain unobstructed views of the pitch from the bays. AFL Architects drew on Q-railing’s extensive experience of sports-venue projects when creating a design for frameless glass balustrading. Given the need for maximum visibility and extremely high levels of safety, the Easy Glass Pro glass balustrade system, together with 21.52 mm SentryGlas, was recommended.
Metal fabricators Xtraweld Services were delighted to be asked to install the glass balustrading. They found the balustrade components easy to manoeuvre, and the installation process went without a hitch. That was largely due to the Safety Wedge System integrated in the Pro base shoes, which allows glass panels to be individually aligned.
Richard Smith, Managing Director of Stoke City F.C., was pleased with the end result. He explained that there was a lot riding on this ambitious undertaking: ‘The stadium-development project we embarked on in the early part of 2017 represented the most significant investment in our stadium since it was opened in August 1997. The glass balustrading that has been supplied by Q-railing has provided an excellent finish to the new facilities, making them look first class. We are absolutely delighted with the outcome, as are supporters both home and away. Together with the addition of new seating, the changes we have made make the stadium look brand new again, 20 years on.’