With its open design the Kaohsiung Stadium, also known as World Game Main Stadium, not only mark an advance in construction techniques but differs from the classic stadiums traditionally closed. Opened in July 2009 for the World Games held in Taiwan, at a cost of $ 150 million, an area of 25,553 meters square and designed by Toyo Ito, taking into account the requirements to qualify as "green building".
The stadium is an open circle with a question mark that is often compared with the symbol of a dragon wagging his tail, an animal that is very prevalent in Asian culture. The solar panels give the roof a scaly appearance similar to a metallic snakeskin. Local residents have begun to give the stadium nicknames such as "glass snake" and "dragon's tail."
It is no coincidence that water and wind play an important role in the design of the stadium roof. Feng Shui literally means wind and water in a traditional Chinese system of aesthetics that dictates that design and placement of objects is the best to harness the positive flow of universal energy. By following these dictates and aided by the Central Weather Bureau, the summer wind direction was determined with computer simulations. This showed that the stadium as a structure can maximize the effect of natural cooling with wind patterns. Therefore, the sides and roof of the stadium are not closed in a circle but rather create a tunnel through which air passes that refreshes the viewer during the hot summer.
Visitors arrive via a wide avenue that becomes square and narrow, located in the area with restaurants and ticket sales.
The planning of the track is oriented north-south with a slight twist of 15 degrees from northwest to southeast within the C-shaped spiral of the stadium. Such a design allows viewers to observe the area safe from the southwest winds at the time of summer or the cold of the northwest in winter. It has also been designed in this position, taking into account the orientation of sunlight and thus providing an environment more comfortable for playing sports.
With thousands of solar panels covering its semi spiral-shaped structure, it is the first stadium that runs completely with on its own energy while it is also the largest photovoltaic system in Taiwan to date. The builders had to create new materials during construction and fix the solar panels so that they served to protect the spectators, so the panels don't just provide energy but directly create the roof of the stadium. These new roofing materials combined with the solar panels were analysed by computer software to determine the impact that earthquakes and typhoons could have on them. Computer models also helped to determine the correct orientation of the roof to protect spectators from the tropical sun of Kaohsiung.