ADDIS ABABA – While sceptics are doubting if one of the world’s poorest countries actually needs a new stadium, Ethiopia will soon be home to a new 60,000-seat sports complex.

The Addis Ababa construction will be a collaboration between German firm LAVA, Quatar-based DESIGNSPORT and local Ethiopian architects JDAW, whose masterplan will be a FIFA and Olympic-standard sports park.

The façade has been inspired by coffee beans – the country’s main source of income – and by a traditional local basket called 'massob.' The overall shape and design reflects Ethiopia’s UNESCO heritage site: excavated rock churches.

The structure will be realized with local materials and will include sustainable features like a roof with an intelligent membrane and solar-powered umbrellas. The entire complex houses a stadium for athletic, religious and national events, aquatic centres, sports halls, open air fields, dormitories and the headquarters of the Federal Sports Commission.

Renderings courtesy of LAVA