AFL Architects | Chelsea Football Club Training Facility
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Cobham Training Campus

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Chelsea FC's Cobham Training Campus balances high performance function within a sensitive landscape form.

Taken holistically, the full campus features the latest in training, rehabilitation, medical, and pitch technology. Spread across 140 acres, Cobham Training Grounds unifies all Chelsea FC’s football training activities and ambitions.

The First Team training centre was completed in 2007. The Academy and Community Pavilion opened in 2008. A subsequent moat infill extension to the First Team facility, creating expanded gym, facilities for the medical team and offices, was completed in 2014.

A building in harmony with its setting

The BREEAM Excellent first team facilities include 30 football pitches - three with undersoil heating and six to Premier League standard - an indoor artificial pitch, a media centre, gyms, cold immersion pools, a sauna, a steam room and a 56ft hydrotherapy pool.

Located on greenbelt land, the green roof softens the impact of the building and aids biodiversity. The form makes reference to the existing ground plane, raised to create volumes below which are enclosed by glazed facades. The facades are then shielded against solar gain by solid shards formed using metal panels designed to naturally weather over time, and variably aligned to add texture.

Unique and attractive spaces have been carefully orientated to maximise natural light, incorporating solar shading screens, high levels of insulation and high specification glazing.

Chelsea FC Training Cobham AFL Architects night3 2

Following the original design, Chelsea FC required the addition of 25% more floorspace. This needed to respect the stringent planning conditions of the site.

Our solution was to fill in around 40% of the original moat. This links to the existing building within the cofferdam to create an expanded gym and associated facilities for the football club’s medical team.

Natural lighting is maximised by the use of flat structural glass rooflights. New offices facing north into the moat have a frameless glass wall to make best use of borrowed light and avoid any solar gain.

The next phase of the Cobham development was to provide a second pavilion specifically for youth and community use.

The architectural theme is continued seamlessly through the façade solution, with materials include free weathering brass classing to the gables and eaves, a subtle ochre rendering plinth and horizontal curtain walling.

The building comprises 16 changing rooms, equipment stores, gymnasium plus support recreational and welfare facilities.

AFL Architects Cobham Youth Academy 21

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