Top 5 Greatest Winter Olympic Venues | The B1M

Top 5 Greatest Winter Olympic Venues | The B1M


The Olympic Games are the world’s most high
profile sporting competition and the global event has been responsible for the creation
of some incredible architecture over the last century. Cities keen to impress both those visiting
the Games, and the vast global audiences they command, have created an array of impressive
structures to stage events. Despite often being overshadowed by the flashy
architecture of its summer cousin, the Winter Olympics has created numerous varied and interesting
buildings throughout its 90 year history – here we take a look at the top 5. We open with a building that did not actually
host any sporting events, but was instead built to host both the opening and closing
ceremonies of the 2014 Winter Olympics. Although the Games in Sochi were heavily criticized
for their high cost, this exuberance gave birth to some particularly impressive venues. The centerpiece of the Games was the Fabergé
egg-inspired Fisht Olympic Stadium. Designed by stadium-specialist Populous, the $779 million
USD arena is named after the nearby Fisht Mountain. Originally built as an enclosed facility,
the 40,000 seat venue was re-opened in 2016 as an open-air football stadium and is set
to host matches during the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Undoubtedly one of the most architecturally
significant buildings to ever host Olympic sport, the Torino Esposizioni was converted
into a temporary ice rink for the 2006 Games. Originally built in 1949, the exhibition hall
designed by engineer Pier Luigi Nervi, is a spectacular ferrocement structure that is
an early innovative example of using prefabricated precast elements. To host the Olympics, the facility was converted
into an ice rink by laying a sand base with refrigeration pipes, and then freezing water
on top of this substrate. The temporary arena held 4,320 people for
ice hockey matches during the Games. Afterward, it returned to hosting fairs and exhibitions. Inspired by the city’s “heron” symbol,
the vast Richmond Olympic Oval was built to host the speed skating events during the 2010
Winter Games. To enclose the speed-skating rink – which
is the same size as six international hockey rinks – the world’s longest composite
glulam wood and steel arches (spanning 95 meters) were created. Due to their size, speed skating venues often
struggle to find a post-Olympics role, but this $225 million USD building was designed
with legacy in mind. After the 2010 Games, the Richmond Oval was reconfigured into a
multipurpose arena that includes two ice hockey rinks, two running tracks, a climbing wall
and a flexible arena which can be used for basketball, volleyball and indoor football. The venue received a Gold Medal from the International
Olympic Committee and International Association of Sports and Leisure Facilities, and in 2015
was recognized as one of the 10 most significant sports venues of the past 50 years. Buried deep within a mountain, the Gjøvik
Olympic Cavern Hall was built for the 1994 Winter Olympics and hosted 16 ice hockey matches
during the Games. The decision was taken to place the arena
deep underground so that it would not take up valuable downtown property or interfere
with Lillehammer’s cityscape, whilst still being centrally located. The spectacular underground venue has a capacity
of 5,500 and is still the world’s largest underground auditorium. Since the Games, the Cavern Hall has become
home to Gjøvik’s ice hockey team. Topping our list is the distinctive shaped
M-Wave in Nagano, Japan. Built to host the speed skating events at
the 1998 Winter Olympics, the vast facility is enclosed by an M-shaped roof that gives
the venue its name. The roof – designed to resemble the wave-like
peaks of the Japanese Alps – was constructed using laminated timber from larch trees grown
around Nagano. In its speed skating formation, the flexible
arena has a capacity of 18,000. Two movable stands, each of which have seating for 1,210
spectators, allow the arena to be converted into various configurations; including a concert
hall and a football field. Just like Canada’s Richmond Oval, the M-wave
received a Gold Medal from the International Olympic Committee and the International Leisure
Sports Facility Association, and in 2015 was also recognized as one of the 10 most significant
sports venues of the past 50 years. The growth of television and online media
audiences, coupled with the importance of showcasing cities in our ever more globalized
world, means that we’re set to expect further incredible Winter Olympic venues in the decades
to come. If you enjoyed this video and would like to
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19 Replies to “Top 5 Greatest Winter Olympic Venues | The B1M”

  1. It's going to be nice to see the more simplistic venues at the South Korea Winter Olympics. You never know, they might even make a profit.

  2. So how much did this cost the taxpayers? And have they ever had any kind of return on investment. Other then prestige, of course, which does not pay interest on bonds.

  3. Probably one of the most corrupt organizations that has ever existed and most of us have yet to notice sadly. Billions of dollars poured in these arenas with no consideration of who really needs this money.

  4. Thanks for including the Richmond Oval outside Vancouver, B.C. … ‼️❣️👍🏼⭐️🇨🇦

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