Real Wireless: Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – the Best-Connected in the UK

Multi-standard, multi-technology and multi-purpose
telecommunications resources available in Spurs’ new home

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–lt;a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SpursNewStadium?src=hash" target="_blank"gt;#SpursNewStadiumlt;/agt;–Tottenham Hotspur has this month opened one of the most technologically
advanced stadiums in the world, designed with technology
incorporated into the fabric of the building and its wider campus to
enhance the fan experience, with free high-density Wi-Fi and mobile
coverage in all areas.

That’s thanks to a strategy developed by the Club alongside the world’s
leading independent wireless advisory firm, Real Wireless, and some of
the world’s top communications equipment suppliers and installers.

The Club’s vision has been to create the finest stadium anywhere in the
world for fans, visitors and the wider community, delivering a major new
landmark for London.

The Club also aspired to create the best-connected stadium in the UK –
an aspiration it has now achieved. There are world class mobile voice
and data services designed and installed by Shared Access for customers
of every UK operator – Vodafone, O2, EE and Three – as well as wireless
emergency and support services, Wi-Fi and technologies for broadcast and
event use. This is an offering unmatched by any other UK sports stadium.

Wireless for all

Real Wireless was engaged by Tottenham Hotspur Football Club in 2013 to
help develop its strategy for wireless communications in the new
stadium. The brief was to ensure that the stadium design that was
emerging from architects Populous included provision for all the
wireless services necessary to deliver the best-connected experience for
fans and operational staff in and around the stadium.

That meant all wireless technologies. Not just 2G, 3G and 4G mobile (and
the ability to support 5G when it arrives), but PMR for support
services, TETRA for emergency services and Wi-Fi – technically
architected, supplied and deployed by the Club’s official enterprise
networking partner, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). In addition, there
needed to be support for technologies such as satellite that may be
required for broadcast and event use.

The design package

Multi-operator and multi-technology capability were not the only
considerations. Sufficient space, power and air conditioning needed to
be made available in the building design to accommodate the mobile
operators’ equipment and the various elements of equipment required for
a distributed antenna system (DAS). In addition, as part of the stadium
IT infrastructure build, containment and fibre for the mobile system
needs were incorporated in the design package from the very beginning.
This was seen as essential to guarantee an efficient mobile deployment.

The design of the new stadium incorporates key features with a
fully-integrated technology infrastructure supported by an ecosystem of
partners that have invested with the Club to build out the technologies

The seating bowl design for 62,062 fans gives an indication of how much
careful planning has gone into this process. Mobile services to the bowl
are provided by antenna located in discreet positions within the roof
structure. Crowd movement and building layout are key factors in the
sectorisation of the design. Similarly, the stadium will host a range of
non-sporting events, including concerts, where pitch coverage is

Data capability is widely available where it is most needed. A high data
rate service is available for the bowl, concourse, podiums, media areas,
hospitality areas, conferencing suites and offices, as well as key
operational areas such as event control and back of house. A medium data
rate service covers the basement and parking areas, while a low data
rate service is available for the stairwells and plant rooms.

Making it happen

At the core of the new system is a fast, scalable and resilient network,
designed to facilitate an enhanced visitor experience and enable
operational efficiency through centralised systems control and
management. The system comprises:

  • A hybrid active/passive distributed antenna system (DAS)
  • Joint Operator Specifications (JOTS)-compliant 2G, 3G and 4G, allowing
    connections for all mobile network operators
  • MIMO on frequencies 800/1800/2100/2600MHz

The hardware that enables this is comprehensive – and extensive. This
extraordinary array of essential hardware – all integrated into the
design of the building – includes:

  • 164 strategically located internal antennas including 48 pitch and
    bowl stadium antennas, six macro antenna locations providing external
    coverage and 19 low level external antennas providing podium coverage
  • Over 45,000m coaxial cable
  • Over 25,000m of individual fibres
  • 2348 passive components
  • 9 master unit racks (POI)
  • 172 Low power remote radio units
  • 18 High power remote radio units (macro)
  • A dedicated equipment room, 100 sqm, with 80 operator racks and 9 POI

A collaborative effort

The Club, its equipment suppliers, Real Wireless and the stadium
architects collaborated to ensure that the aesthetic aspects of the new
stadium would not be undermined by wireless infrastructure. At the same
time, the Club wanted to guarantee the highest-quality service possible
to all users of wireless devices from the moment they enter the stadium.

Industry engagement throughout this period was important – not least the
need to encourage all UK operators to participate. The Club had many
meetings with the UK’s four mobile operators, as well as neutral host
companies, to help guide them towards a mobile solution that would meet
its ambitions. It was eventually decided that the complexity of the
design and build of the mobile system in a stadium under construction
would require the services of a neutral host company. The Club selected
Shared Access Limited to carry out the detailed design and system

The role of Shared Access Limited was to design and build the system to
the specification of the Club and create a commercial platform that
would allow all mobile operators to deploy all their current
technologies. In addition, the system needs to be capable of supporting
5G when it is ready to be deployed by the mobile operators.

An operational asset

Today, not only does the infrastructure support the fan experience – it
is an operational asset that allows the Club to optimise its business
operation. For instance, as well as 100% wireless coverage and mobile
connectivity with all four operators, Bluetooth beacon technology was
installed with HPE, enabling the Club to engage with fans through its
new Spurs Official app that enables wayfinding and proximity marketing
to maximise the fan experience at the stadium.

Sanjeev Katwa, Head of Technology, Tottenham Hotspur, said:
“Creating an enhanced mobile infrastructure is a major part of our aim
to create a truly world-class venue, allowing our fans to be connected
at all times. This system is revolutionary, transforming the way we
connect with our fans and staff.”

Mark Keenan, CEO at Real Wireless, said: “We were delighted to be
asked to apply our skills as the world’s leading independent wireless
advisory firm to making this ground-breaking new system a reality. We
applaud the vision of Tottenham Hotspur to address this at an early
stage in the stadium design process and the Club’s ambition to bring
stadium communications into a new and exciting era.”

Chris Jackman, CEO at Shared Access, said: “Our brief was to
design and build the system to enable mobile voice and data capabilities
across the new stadium and, as a neutral host company, to carry out the
detailed design and system integration. The result is a connected
experience for everyone that sets the bar at its highest-ever level for
stadium-based communications systems.”



Real Wireless
Nicola Davies,
Kava Communications
[email protected]
07725 832901

Tottenham Hotspur
Tony Stevens
+44 (0)20 3544 8543
M: +44 (0)7818 091 387
E: [email protected]


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