Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Iconic or Not?

Architecture and sports are my 2 biggest passions in life. I was blessed to have the opportunity to play college football while majoring in Architecture. A lot of people ask me how I did it and to be honest I do not know, I just stayed focused and pushed through it I guess. Even one of my Senior Seminar Professor's said "If I knew you your freshman year I would have made you choose between football or architecture." Well, I am happy she did not know me until my final year in college. That being said, I am fascinated and obsessed with sports architecture, and it is the area I want to pursue as I begin my career and eventually go into Grad School. With the Olympics around the corner I am interested to see how London compares to Beijing architecturally. The Olympic stadium for the 2008 games, known as the "Bird's Nest," was an engineering and architectural wonder. The way the steel was morphed and shaped is very unique and inspiring. But, in London, the city and Olympic committee have steered off in a different direction when it comes to designing stadiums. Back since the Greeks and Romans large monumental stadia were constructed to last, but 1,000's of years later for the first time ever, a group of architects were asked to design a stadium that can be reduced and taken apart. The 80,000 seat stadium will be reduced to 25,000 permanent seats after the Games. When it comes to Olympic structures, most of them just collect dust and put the city in debt because they are too big to operate. To prevent financial issues in the future the stadium will be taken apart like a lego set and is currently up for auction. The debate now is, can we consider such designs like the London Stadium as iconic and monumental if they are built not to last? Or, is this our generation's iconic architectural masterpiece? (The stadium was designed by Rod Sheard and his firm Populous)
 The link below is from the Wall Street Journal discussing the London stadium.

Here is another link from the WSJ of a cool interactive video showing the design of the structure.

English Premier League team West Ham is making a strong case to move to the London venue. With the Paralympics wrapping up, many critics are now concerned of the 'White Elephant' in the room which is the stadium collecting dust and serving no purpose. The link below is a short interview by West Ham's manager.

No comments:

Post a Comment