The Russian city of Nizhny Novgorod opened a $30 million tender Thursday to design the city’s stadium for the 2018 World Cup, far behind many of the other 10 host cities.
The winning bidder will have three years and three months to produce a plan for the arena, potentially delaying the start of construction until mid-2016, two years before the tournament starts.
The tender, posted on a government contracting website, specifies a 45,000-capacity stadium that can be reduced to 30,000 seats after the tournament and will host a World Cup quarterfinal.
Companies have until November 26 to apply.
Yekaterinburg on Thursday also announced a tender to upgrade the city's Central Stadium in a project also valued at $30 million.
Before Nizhny Novgorod was confirmed as a host city last month, the local government issued a tender for a new underground railway line to take fans to the stadium.
Other host cities are far ahead of Nizhny Novgorod in their preparations, with construction work well under way on new stadiums in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and building has even started in the little known city of Saransk, by far the smallest of the hosts.