Construction has started on the Quzhou Sports Campus, a new complex that will feature a series of facilities designed to look like an “extraterrestrial fantasy”.

Based in Quzhou in the Chinese province of Zhejiang, the project spans almost 700,000 square metres, with the first and second phase to cover a construction area of around 340,000sqm.

Work in the opening two phases will include a 30,000-seat stadium, a 10,000-capacity gymnasium, a 2,000-seat natatorium, a national sports complex and an outdoor sports venue.

Other facilities at the site will include a science and technology museum, hotel accommodation, a youth centre and retail programs.

Designed by MAD Architects, the essence of the innovative project is to “embed the functions of the sports park within natural forms”. MAD said the centre of the new park will feature an earth-art landscape that “falls somewhere between that of Earth and Mars”.

Some of the structures in the park will be shaped like volcanoes rising out of the ground and others like craters similar to those on Mars. MAD has also pledged that more than 70 per cent of land on site will be covered with “lush forestland”.

Ma Yansong, the founder of MAD who is leading the project, said: “We dream not only of creating an urban space about sports and ecology, but also turning it into a unique land art park for the world, establishing a relationship between the city’s heritage and history of Shanshui culture.

“The relationship between man and nature is not only about ecology and sustainability, but it is also about spirit and mood.

“This is the culture and philosophy that has long existed in the history of this land and needs to be applied in the development of our future cities.”

Work on the site is due to be completed by 2021.

Image: MAD