This is Friends Arena

Finding your way to Friends Arena (click here)

Friends Arena is Sweden's national arena and one of the world’s most modern arenas. Thanks to a clear view from all seats, the latest communication technology, a retractable roof, and excellent support services, all guests experience great moments. Friends Arena clearly raised the bar when it comes to sports arenas.

The arena holds up to 65,000 guests for concerts and 50,000 for sporting events. Friends Arena is home to the men's national football team and the AIK football team (soccer).

The Swedish Football Association, the Solna municipality, Jernhusen, Peab, and Fabege own the arena.

The arena is named after Friends, an anti-bullying organization. Swedbank owns the rights to the arena’s name, which it gave to the Friends Foundation. As a sponsor, Swedbank’s objective is to give the foundation increased opportunities to reach out to children and young people in schools and sports clubs.

Not just big events

Friends Arena is designed for all types of events. The venue can be adapted to handle everything from major public events to smaller performances starting from 7000 spectators. Besides sporting and music events, the arena is designed, for example, for business meetings, galas, conferences, trade shows, and parties. Friends Arena is the only venue in Sweden that can offer features and functions such as flexibility and scalability for small and large events, combined with the audience’s proximity to the arena floor and comfortable seating.

These capabilities attract the best artists, while organizers get opportunities to create even better events. The arena main gallery has a concentrated atmosphere – thanks to stands that are built on three levels. This construction provides all spectators with a sense of closeness to performers on the arena floor.

Quick changes of surface

Friends Arena can handle events on any surface, such as natural grass, gravel, ice, wood chips, and parquet. And the floor can be quickly transformed. For example, in March 2013, the floor was changed from parquet to ice and then to the grass in less than two weeks to accommodate these events in succession: Swedish Song Contest final, a bandy final, and a world cup football qualifier.

Sophisticated logistics are necessary to cope with rapid changeovers between events. While planning the arena, extensive effort went into developing effective, flexible solutions for logistics, rigging, and stage positions, which enable short changeover times between events. Effective logistics solutions enable increased capacity utilization. A two-lane service road under the stands enables organizers to easily and conveniently drive directly onto the arena floor with equipment for projects such as constructing stages, laying grass, and making ice.

Retractable roof

The arena’s retractable roof ensures that concerts, sporting events, and shows can be arranged year round – regardless of weather. Organizers may determine if the roof is open or closed.

The arena's two, 3750-square-meter movable ceiling sections are three-feet thick. This corresponds to six full-sized residential gardens. The roof is designed for mounting lights and sound equipment and can hold up to 350 tons.

Technology that makes it happen

The technical equipment in the Friends Arena is designed so that visitors won’t miss a single moment. The media cube that hangs from the roof has four, 65-square-meter screens. The entire image area corresponds to about 520 40-inch screens. The cube weighs 64 tons. About 700 LED TV screens surround main gallery, which enhances visual experiences. And the sound system enables fantastic sound experiences. Via the arena's wireless network, 30,000 guests can surf simultaneously and share experiences while they happen.

Food and drink

The arena houses 36 kiosks, 4 restaurants, and 2 champagne bars. Kiosks serve a variation of food such as wraps, salads and hot dogs. In the main entrance restaurant, guests can get simple bistro dishes.  An a la carte restaurant is on the member floor in the arena's north end. Menus change according to season and event.

History

In the early 2000s, public discussions took up the issue of Rasunda, Sweden’s national arena. Rasunda opened in 1937. The venue was worn and didn’t meet international safety and capacity standards. Initially, the plan was to renovate and expand Rasunda. But bids were too expensive. A new plan suggested a new arena. After discussions with the Solna municipality, the project expanded to include an entirely new city district around an arena, with hotels, shopping centers, homes, and offices.

Construction started in December 2009 after Crown Princess Victoria ceremoniously shoveled the first scoop. During the opening ceremony on 27 October 2012, Friends Arena officials formally received a baton (symbolizing Sweden's national arena) from Råsunda officials. Architects Krook & Tjäder, Berg Arkitektkontor, and British Populus designed the arena.

Events

The Friends Arena events calendar is constantly updated with new events, visit www.friendsarena.se/evenemang

Arenastaden (Arena district)


Friends Arena is in the emerging Arena district in the Solna municipality. The Mall of Scandinavia and Quality Hotel Friends are adjacent to the arena. The mall will be Scandinavia's largest shopping center. The hotel opens in September 2013.  About 3000 homes and offices for 25,000 employees are being built. Occupancy will start in May 2014.

The Friends organization

Friends is a non-profit organization, whose mission is to stop bullying. The organization educates and supports preschools, schools, and sports clubs throughout Sweden.

Its vision is a safe, secure, equal-opportunity society in which children and young people can grow and develop.

Friends’ strategy extends over the long term regarding education, advocacy, counseling, and opinion leadership – to increase adults’ and children’s knowledge and involvement. Right now, the organization employs nearly 40 persons with diverse backgrounds. The red thread that binds them consists of experience in working with children and young people, educators, teachers, coaches, and behavioral scientists, among other stakeholders.

Friends is represented throughout Sweden via its four regional offices. Since 1997, the organization has worked with about 1500 schools.

Operations are financed via donations from individuals and businesses – plus fees from its training activities. Friends has a 90-account; Svensk Insamlingskontroll (Swedish fundraising audit) reviews Friends accounts. Swedbank is Friends’ main sponsor.

Pictures

For pictures of the arena, please visit our press room at http://www.mynewsdesk.com/se/pressroom/friendsarena/image/list