Olympic Games provide the host nations with an ideal opportunity to show off their innovation and advancement.
Over the years, we have seen some stunning and modern architectural designs that offer a refreshing change from the classics. From London’s Shooting Venue to Beijing Nest, there are countless examples of the Olympic venues that have left a lasting impact on the architecture.
Here is a list of top 13 most innovative Olympic venues from around the globe.
Beijing Bird’s Nest for Summer Olympics 2008
The Beijing National Stadium designed by Herzog & de Meuron, Li Xinggang, and Ai Weiwei left the spectators stunned with its intricately twisting steel sections and dazzling lights.
Turin’s Olympic Arch for Winter Olympics 2006
The 226 feet high Olympic Arch designed by Hugh Dutton brings attention to a pedestrian bridge connecting the Olympic Village to the Sports venues in the vicinity.
Berlin Olympic Stadium for Summer Olympics 1936
The 1936 Games were held in the Nazi Germany in a colossal Stadium designed by Werner March. The stone column ring outside symbolised the absolute disregard of individuality by the fascist regime.
Munich Olympiastadion München for Summer Olympics 1972
Designed by Günter Behnisch and Frei Otto, the Olympiastadion München was an anti-thesis of the Berlin Olympics Stadium with its transparent canopies inviting the world inside.
London Shooting Venue for Summer Olympics 2012
The vibrant, streamlined and smooth design of the London Shooting Venue was realised by the Magma Architecture who drew inspiration from the “flow and precision” of the shooting games.
London Olympic Stadium for Summer Olympics 2012
The sunken bowl like Olympic Stadium designed by Populous provided compact seating while the extra viewing stations were available at a station that encircled the stadium.
Montréal Olympics Stadium for Summer Olympics 1976
Montréal hosted the games in 1976 and erected a spectacular doughnut-shaped Olympic Stadium designed by Roger Tallibert, complete with a 556-feet tall leaning mast. However, the mechanical failure took the cost of the venue up to USD 1 billion.
Beijing Water Cube at the Summer Olympics 2008
The Beijing National Aquatics Center designed by the PTW Architects won points for innovation, beauty, and design with its soap bubble façade.
Athens Spyros Louis for Summer Olympics 2004
The dazzling Olympics arena designed by the Weidleplan and Santiago Calatrava is named after a Greek warrior who was the winner of the first modern Olympic marathon in 1896.
Tokyo Yoyogi National Gymnasium for Summer Olympics 1964
The design of Kenzo Tange is a beautiful homage to the traditional Japanese architecture. The sweeping curves add a wonderful blend of the contemporary touch to the structure which is claimed to be ‘one of the most iconic building profiles in the world’.
Sydney ANZ Stadium for Summer Olympics 2000
Another design by Populous, the ANZ Stadium was redesigned and fitted with movable seats. The arena can now change its shape from an oval to a rectangular field.
Rome Palazzetto dello Sport for Summer Olympics 1960
Albeit its relatively smaller size, this Pier Luigi Nervi designed is well-known for the striking design of its Y-shaped column ring.
Athens The Panathenaic Stadium for Summer Olympics 1896 and 2004
The stadium is an extension of the ancient games venue built in 4BC. The stadium was renovated by the renowned architect Anastasios Metaxas to host the first modern Olympics in 1896. Later, the site was also made a cultural centrepiece of the 2004 Athens Olympics.