by World Monuments Fund
The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Stadium, a modernist structure designed in the 1960s by renowned architect Charles Correa and eminent engineer Mahendra Raj, represents the progressive ideals and experimental spirit that characterized India’s post-independence period. Located in the city of Ahmedabad, the stadium is particularly notable for its visionary use of concrete and cantilevering. World Monuments Fund (WMF) named the site to the World Monuments Watch in 2020 to spotlight both the architectural inventiveness of the design and the severe weathering undergone by the exposed concrete structure over the decades.
In response to the need for a conservation strategy for Patel Stadium, WMF partnered with the Amdavad Municipal Corporation (AMC) to develop a Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan (CCMP) for the future of the stadium that was supported by a grant from the Getty Foundation. The process involved engaging with a diverse group of stakeholders, including the Charles Correa Foundation, the Mahendra Raj Archives, the National Centre for Safety of Heritage Structures, Department of Civil Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras), a team of local and international experts; conducting a condition assessment and other studies; and consulting with architectural, engineering, and heritage experts, as well as local cricketers and members of the local community who wished to express their love for this stadium and its significance in their lives.
As the city of Ahmedabad plans its 2036 Olympic bid, we are optimistic that this is an opportunity to breathe new life into the historic stadium and recommit to its conservation. We welcome the Amdavad Municipal Corporation’s proposal to re-examine our conservation plan in light of the Olympic bid and hope that the project can become an icon for preservation and revitalization across the country.