Roofing of Arénas de Nîmes

This removable roof allows thousands a year–round window to the past. 

Client: Town of Nimes
Location: Nimes, France
Completed: 1988
Architects: Horst Dürr at LABFAC (Geipel Finn & Michelin Nicolas)
Engineers: IF-Group,  Schlaich Bergermann und Partner
Membrane Area: 5,000 m²
Membrane Material: PVC Coated Polyester
Scope of our Services: Installation and Erection Planning

The pneumatically supported roof of the Arena of Nîmes was designed to preserve the ancient Roman amphitheater to use as a venue for modern amusements and tourism year round. The city of Nîmes required a dismountable structure that could be assembled yearly to protect the relic during the winter months. A subtle air-filled pillow anchored between two points served the purpose, but the installation method proved to be a significant logistical challenge. Collaborating with Werner Sobek and Schlaich Bergermann, Horst was responsible for the erection planning to lift the outer and inner layers of pillow and the rope net into position for tensioning without damaging the historical infrastructure.