The fully demountable Chicane Stand shade structure was considered the largest structure of its kind in the world when first installed in Adelaide’s Victoria Park in 2008 and remains one of the most intriguing and innovative creations anywhere in the world.
The structure, designed by Shadeplan and engineered by Magryn & Associates, measures 70m x 30m, provides shade cover to some 2,500 spectators during the annual Clipsal 500 V8 Supercars motor race and needs to be installed and dismantled each year before and after the event.
While standard engineering design methodology relies on the use of compression support columns spaced at equal intervals throughout a structure, this approach was not possible for the Chicane Stand structure as central columns reduce the number of available spectator seats while impeding spectator views.
The solution was to develop an innovative tension structure design with a 70m main triangular truss and twin load-bearing support columns at each end. Tensile cables were then used to replace the standard post and beam construction.
The project carried a high level of technical risk as the design and engineering methodologies utilised had not previously been incorporated into a structure of this type and size. Another important feature and achievement is that the structure is engineered to allow for quick and cost effective dismantling and reinstallation.