Azusa Sports Leading Japan’s Sports Culture

The Japanese government is actively promoting sports, as seen in the Japan Sports Agency and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry that have established guidelines for reforming stadiums and arenas, as well as the Japan Tourism Agency that encourages sports tourism to increase foreign visitors to Japan. Stadiums and arenas are essential to national economic growth and regional revitalization going forward, as they drive the local economy and propel development in neighboring areas.

Azusa creates stadiums and arenas through total management including operations, with the aspiration of realizing venues that capitalize on diversity inherent in sports and generate various positive effects. We are committed to helping sports culture take root and continue developing in Japan after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics by producing facilities that deliver profits, reinvigorate the local community, and function as places where sports are not only played and watched but also captivate people.


Azusa has designed more sports facilities than any other architectural firm in Japan. Utilizing the technology and expertise developed therein to the fullest, we will continue to create stadiums and arenas that lead the nation’s sports culture going forward, through three solutions outline below.


[ Community ]

Facilities that play a pivotal role in creating a thriving community

Stadiums and arenas of the future are called on to generate added value in the forms of attracting visitors, delivering profits, and propelling community development. Located in the heart of a city or near a public transport station, facilities need to provide easy access for visitors so that they can stop by frequently and watch games and events on the spur of the moment. Azusa also considers it important for a stadium or arena to be built as part of a hotel, retail, and other mixed-use development, in order for the venue to blend into the surrounding area, and serve as a place that is open to the community and allows locals to mingle. We propose facilities that will play a pivotal role in developing a thriving community, creating a tourist town based on sports, and fostering sports tourism that leverages what the community has to offer.


[ Flexibility ]

Facilities that generate profits with high utilization rates

In partnership with GL Events of France, Azusa has launched the business of designing low-cost stadiums and arenas that offer outstanding efficiency, flexibility, and scalability, using steel-frame unit seating systems. We propose the stadiums and arenas of the future that can be utilized throughout the year as sports and convention facilities, ensuring configurations that can be changed easily and scaling either up or down to accommodate various events, substantially lower building costs and lower management burden, in addition to the ability to adapt flexibly to client needs and future plans.


[ Hospitality ]

Evolution from facilities where sports are played and watched into facilities where sports captivate people

What is important to the stadiums and arenas of the future is that they serve as facilities where sports are not only watched but also captivate people, thrilling and exciting audiences. To that end, seating configurations and event staging are critical to creating facilities that are truly enjoyable and highly hospitable. The design conditions for these facilities are affected by seating space constraints and other fluctuating elements. Bowl Program (proprietary development July 2015) swiftly analyzes these elements and finds the best seating configuration. The program also proposes seating plans appropriate to the uses and target audiences of the facility from among an infinite variety of options.

Bowl Program (proprietary development July 2015) is our proprietary design system that performs a variety of tasks, ranging from the 3D planning of tiered seating structures to the verification of sight lines.

Message from the Domain Head

Masakuni Nagahiro

Senior executive officer and head of the Sports & Entertainment Domain

Stadiums and arenas are no longer simply sports venues.

They must be designed from a broad perspective that includes both community development—just like art galleries, museums, theaters, and other places for citizens to gather—and business administration—just like retail facilities and hotels to attract visitors and secure profitability. I consider it crucial to develop a venue that acts as people’s third place after work and home, enjoyed and frequented by all and deeply rooted in the community like its backyard. Also important is to create a destination for entertainment: that is, a ballpark not a baseball ground, and an arena not a gymnasium.

Each and every one of us at the Sports & Entertainment Domain is devoted to the development of sports culture in Japan, with an eye to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Yokohama Cultural Gymnasium Redevelopment Project Team

Creating arenas with excellent transport access in the heart of the city to lead Japan’s arena culture in the future

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Other major projects

Transport infrastructure

Azusa has long designed airport facilities in Japan. Making the maximum use of the design expertise developed in the airport sector, the Transport Infrastructure Domain is expanding its design services into the port and harbor, railway, and land transportation sectors, in Japan and around the world.

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