Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Fisht Stadium unveiled
Kansas City-based international architectural practice, Populous, has designed the Fisht Olympic Stadium. Completed in 2014, the 40,000 capacity stadium was designed for the Winter Olympics 2014, which kick off today. The Fabergé egg inspired stadium is located in the Russian city of Sochi.
Populous is a global sports and entertainment architecture practice that has designed some of the world’s most famous and recognisable sporting and entertainment venues, including the London 2012 Olympic Stadium, Sydney 2000 Stadium, Yankee Stadium, Nanjing Sports Park and Emirates Stadium, among others.
Currently, the company is working on a wide variety of projects globally such as the 2014 World Cup, Rio de Janeiro 2016, the Olympique Lyonnais and several projects in Russia around the 2014 Winter Olympics and the 2018 World Cup.
The international architectural practice designed the master plan and overlay of the competition and non-competition venues and facilities for the Sochi Bid Committee for the 2014 Winter Games Bid.
The elaborate jewel-encrusted Fabergé eggs that are a renowned Russian icon inspired the unique shell-like design of the Fisht Olympic Stadium. The venue features a translucent polycarbonate roof, which will be used to project vivid illumination shows during the Games, while also giving the venue an appearance of snowy peaks, ensuring it sits in harmony with the landscape of the Imeretinskaya Valley and the Caucasus Mountains.
Initial design stages began in 2009. And in the summer of 2011 a creation of a temporary roof over the Fisht stadium was produced in order to guarantee ‘studio’ conditions for the opening and closing ceremonies of the Winter Olympic Games.
Populous, together with Buro Happold, created a roof structure and a floor structure underneath the field of play to facilitate a range of staging options, including the suggestion for the ability for a dramatic flying arrangement for the culmination of the opening and closing ceremonies – namely a ‘flying’ cauldron emerging from the sea and coming to rest in the middle of the Olympic park.
“We designed the lower seating tier to take on an extensive series of demountable structures including eight tunnels each nine metres wide and a fully demountable northern section of the lower tier to enable a large-scale staging operation in that section of the seating bowl,” said the architects.
Sochi 2014 Olympic Games Adelto Comment
There will be 15 games in 10 different venues across Russia during the Winter Olympics in Sochi. A total of 85 countries will participate in the games this year. And more than 6,000 athletes will compete for 98 gold medal events.
The controversial games have been over shadowed by gay rights abuses and Russia’s anti-gay legislation. The Winter Olympics have received much criticism from the global community including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned discrimination and attacks on people based on their sexual orientation.
Internet giant Google also joined in the celebrations by flying the gay pride flag today and Britain’s Channel 4, which has the rights to the Winter Paralympics has joined the many growing ranks of support for gay athletes and protest against Russia’s anti-gay laws.
The International Olympic Committee has said athletes are free to speak out as long as they do so away from accredited areas.
Russia’s president Vladimir Putin has claimed that the laws are not discriminatory, but aimed at protecting Russian children from dangerous information about homosexuality and paedophilia.
“We must all raise our voices against attacks on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or intersex people,” said Ban Ki-moon to the Guardian.
“We must oppose the arrests, imprisonments and discriminatory restrictions they face.”
Adelto hopes for a positive change in Russia.
The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics will run from 7 – 23 February, 2014 in Sochi, Russia, sochi2014.com
Images courtesy of Populous and Sochi 2014 Winter Games
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