Sports and entertainment venue specialist eyes creation of “exceptional” immersive projects


Source: Populous

Populous’ proposed MUCcc Arena in Munich, which will be Germany’s first climate-neutral arena

Spurs and London Olympic Stadium architect Populous has launched a specialist audiovisual and acoustics design agency in partnership with two long-term collaborators in the field.

The business, which recently secured planning permission for its Madison Square Garden Sphere entertainment venue in Stratford, east London, has set up Experience Studios with Mark Murphy and Kevin Luckhurst.

Murphy and Luckurst worked with Populous on the design and operation of the O2 Arena and Wimbledon Centre Court, as well as on the 2012 Olympic Stadium and the RIBA National Award-winning Spurs stadium.

Populous said Experience Studios would use its expertise to influence the architecture of venues at an early stage to “ensure the physical spaces are optimised for spectator experience through audiovisual and acoustic installations”.

Christopher Lee

Christopher Lee

It said venues would be “primed” to reach audiences beyond their “architectural footprint”, and that the agency would push the boundaries of technology to “create exceptional, immersive, and ultimately memorable experiences”.

Christopher Lee, Populous’ managing director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, said the new venture was an extension of a long-running partnership with Murphy and Luckhurst.

“Having collaborated with Mark and Kevin for many years on several major projects, the opportunity to support the growth and development of Experience Studios and strengthen our own offer is very exciting,” he said.

“For Populous, it’s all about holistic design, having the best people for the job and providing our clients a complete and tailored design package.”

Populous and Experience Studios are currently working together on the audiovisual, broadcast, and acoustic design for the 20,000-capacity MUCcc Arena in Munich, which will be Germany’s first climate-neutral arena.

Populous is lead architect for the project, for client SWMUNICH Real Estate, which received the backing of Freising City Council in April.

Kevin Luckhurst (left) & Mark Murphy (right) - Experience Studios

Kevin Luckhurst and Mark Murphy