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Athens 2004 Venues - 8 Years on.


paul92

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This article shows the decaying venues from just eight years ago.

Check out the especially sad photo 13.

http://summergames.ap.org/article/8-years-later-athens-olympic-venues-decay

With London leading the way with the importance of legacy and 'after games' planning. It looks like the future is bright for Olympic venues in the years to come.

And is this the worst case of forgotten Olympic venues?

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Many of Seoul's Olympic venues remain relatively under utilised from what I understand. The Olympic Pool itself is empty (although the complex it sits in is quite well maintained with other facilities). I can't remember where, but there was discussion a few years ago of demolition of the Seoul Olympic Stadium for a housing development. Sangam Stadium, built for the 2002 World Cup has taken position as premier stadium of the city. That in itself is ridiculous, they should have used the Olympic Stadium.

Not quite the same, but although overall Atlanta's venues have found quite good use post-Games, its Olympic cauldron languishes at the back of a parking lot.

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I have been to Athens about a year ago and i find this article true about the coast line venues. There are occasional events that take place down there but most of the facilities are still underused. Btw building permanent venues for softball and baseball in a city where there is zero interest in these sports is really scandalous. On the contrary, the venues at the olympic park are overused. The olympic stadium is the home of two of the biggest football clubs, Panathinaikos and AEK Athens. A friend told me that the stadium was so overused that there had been severe damages to the field turf. The same goes with Baskeball arena (2nd most popular sport) which is the home of two major clubs. The swimming venues are used by the swimming and water polo clubs of Athens and so goes on. The Badminton arena has been the biggest succes in post olympics use. In conclusion, readining all these articles about Athens venues, I was expecting a much worse situation there. But that, of course, doesn't mean that the legacy plan of Athens has been a success

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The problem with Athens was too many permanent venues without a clear legacy.

Venues such as the beach volleyball arena was decided to be permanent for some reason, with the idea that it would become a premiere outdoor concert venue, only now starting to become realized. Other indoor venues are only now becoming something else.

Venues such as those for baseball, softball and field hockey should have been temporary. Perhaps they were, but the cost of demolishing them or deconstructing them probably proved too costly, so they just let them rot.

The swimming venues, velodrome, and Olympic Park indoor arenas were already existing prior to the Athens 2004 Olympics, I wonder what was their maintenance state prior to the games? Surely a clean every now and then and using the pools as public pools could have ensure some form of legacy.

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Venues such as those for baseball, softball and field hockey should have been temporary. Perhaps they were, but the cost of demolishing them or deconstructing them probably proved too costly, so they just let them rot.

Serious question - didn't Athens make a point to not build any fully temporary venues out of pride? The thinking was that the birthplace of the Games should not welcome them back home with temporary venues that would vanish afterwards. I remember reading this somewhere...

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Thats...Just...Depressing! :(

<_< ...and you know - they knew it, even before the 04 games started.

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Its truly sad, but at least some of the most bigger venues as the Athletics Stadium and the Velodrome (which was used for the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest) are still in use, luckily. But I agree that a lot of venues should have been temporary. I mean, making a permanent beach volleyball venue? Come on...

Also, they lost more money than planned for the construction of the venues (which also had many delays and they were almost unfinished before the games, something that I didn't remember hearing about since Montreal...). I don't want to blame the olympics for Greece current situation, but there's no doubt that it kinda contributed to make things more difficult to greeks when the crisis came.

Beijing had worse white elephants than Beijing IMO but at least China is a bigger and more stable country than Greece and they will not suffer much of it (though it's still sad to see wonderful jewels like the Bird Nest laying disused...well, at least until the IAAF Championship in Athletics happen in some years there). I'm glad to see London has learned the lesson of 2004 and 2008...but of course, many back then were pissy because the venues weren't pharaonic enough. Now I guess most are thanking god they didn't spent tons of money on venues which will become useless after the games.

Mediocre opening ceremony; lousy legacy. That's what it amounts to.

No mean to offend you but seriously, do you have to use every f*** thread to show your hatred to the 2004 OC whenever Athens is slighty mentioned? We got it! You dislike it. Now stop shoving it on us, for god sake... <_<

*worse elephants than Athens.

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Mediocre opening ceremony; lousy legacy. That's what it amounts to.

Magical opening ceremony. Superb Games. Bureaucratic waste of time for first three-years of planning phase. Four-year sprint to realizing the Games. Haste rendered legacy-planning an unaffordable luxury.

It is astonishing to me that someone would make such an effort to go out of their way to spit on another poster's treasured memories. This was calculated, focused antagonism that had no bearing on the topic at hand. I can't imagine what it must be like to live a day in Baron's shoes.

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It is astonishing to me that someone would make such an effort to go out of their way to spit on another poster's treasured memories. This was calculated, focused antagonism that had no bearing on the topic at hand. I can't imagine what it must be like to live a day in Baron's shoes.

Almost every post I've seen you write about London2012 has been negative. And the second somebody expresses dislike to Athens. (which you obviously have a great affection for) you start whining.

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Its truly sad, but at least some of the most bigger venues as the Athletics Stadium and the Velodrome (which was used for the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest) are still in use, luckily. But I agree that a lot of venues should have been temporary. I mean, making a permanent beach volleyball venue? Come on...

Also, they lost more money than planned for the construction of the venues (which also had many delays and they were almost unfinished before the games, something that I didn't remember hearing about since Montreal...). I don't want to blame the olympics for Greece current situation, but there's no doubt that it kinda contributed to make things more difficult to greeks when the crisis came.

Beijing had worse white elephants than Beijing IMO but at least China is a bigger and more stable country than Greece and they will not suffer much of it (though it's still sad to see wonderful jewels like the Bird Nest laying disused...well, at least until the IAAF Championship in Athletics happen in some years there). I'm glad to see London has learned the lesson of 2004 and 2008...but of course, many back then were pissy because the venues weren't pharaonic enough. Now I guess most are thanking god they didn't spent tons of money on venues which will become useless after the games.

*worse elephants than Athens.

My thoughts exactly... I don't think that Beijing did a better job, in terms of legacy(Bird's nest?). But the the thing is that Greece is a much smaller country, with relatively limited financial resources. They ought to have been more foresightful. I also agree that London paved the way for a wiser legacy planning by future host cities.

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Beijing had worse white elephants than Beijing IMO

I've gotten the impression that a lot of the new venues Beijing build (and there were a lot) have actually been put to good use because they're located at universities or have been taken up as Olympic training grounds.Also, Beijing itself is huge and continues to grow. It might not be unreasonable to think that it will grow into being able to sustain the Bird's Nest as more than a national hollowed site.

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Its truly sad, but at least some of the most bigger venues as the Athletics Stadium and the Velodrome (which was used for the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest) are still in use, luckily. But I agree that a lot of venues should have been temporary. I mean, making a permanent beach volleyball venue? Come on...

Also, they lost more money than planned for the construction of the venues (which also had many delays and they were almost unfinished before the games, something that I didn't remember hearing about since Montreal...). I don't want to blame the olympics for Greece current situation, but there's no doubt that it kinda contributed to make things more difficult to greeks when the crisis came.

Beijing had worse white elephants than Beijing IMO but at least China is a bigger and more stable country than Greece and they will not suffer much of it (though it's still sad to see wonderful jewels like the Bird Nest laying disused...well, at least until the IAAF Championship in Athletics happen in some years there). I'm glad to see London has learned the lesson of 2004 and 2008...but of course, many back then were pissy because the venues weren't pharaonic enough. Now I guess most are thanking god they didn't spent tons of money on venues which will become useless after the games.

No mean to offend you but seriously, do you have to use every f*** thread to show your hatred to the 2004 OC whenever Athens is slighty mentioned? We got it! You dislike it. Now stop shoving it on us, for god sake... <_<

*worse elephants than Athens.

The arena (O.A.C.A. Olympic Indoor Hall) was used as the site of the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest.

I don't think Beijing has bigger white elephants than Athens. Aside from the beach volleyball venue rotting, most venues (situated at university sites) are getting reasonable use. The Birds Nest Stadium will be used for the upcoming World Athletics Championships.

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Starting when can we say a venue has become an elephant? Is there a deadline? I ask this because converting an olympic venue to legacy mode and filling all the bureaucracies takes time and the press can be very misleading in those cases.

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Mediocre opening ceremony; lousy legacy. That's what it amounts to.

I find it alarming that someone who purports to be an expert on Olympic ceremonies would so quickly disregard one of the most iconic and enduring Olympic ceremonies of all time. It has stood the test of time. I watched it the other day and it remains classic. On the other hand, other ceremonies like Atlanta dated very quickly due to their relatively unoriginal content. At least Athens challenged our perception of the Olympic ceremony. It's devastating that Greece is in the position it is in now, but it will one day recover, and when it does it can look back with pride at what it achieved.

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Starting when can we say a venue has become an elephant? Is there a deadline? I ask this because converting an olympic venue to legacy mode and filling all the bureaucracies takes time and the press can be very misleading in those cases.

A venue can easily become a white elephant when there's been no continual regular use for years. Having a 1 off sport event yearly isn't sufficient to say that the venue is not a white elephant.

I guess a white elephant could also be considered if there's insufficient money generated by the venue to support it's maintenance costs, or if it's just left to rot, because there's insufficient money to demolish it or maintain it.

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:( Sad sight

Sydney's Olympic Stadium is now used as a multi-purpose venue and Atlanta's was turned into a Baseball park. Hope London's Olympic Stadium can make some good use after the games and not end up like Beijing's Bird's Nest or Athens' abandoned stadia.

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:( Sad sight

Sydney's Olympic Stadium is now used as a multi-purpose venue and Atlanta's was turned into a Baseball park. Hope London's Olympic Stadium can make some good use after the games and not end up like Beijing's Bird's Nest or Athens' abandoned stadia.

Beijing's Bird's Nest is not a white elephant - it serves the purpose as China's National Stadium. It sees dozens of civic events per year and will play a big role in the development of Football in China. It's very permanent and is being used for its intended purpose.

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^^ A load of bull. Pardon the French. Look at the video, all it serves is a tourist attraction, even the architect regrets designing it. Having 1 or 2 major events a year (i.e single day events) does not make it a stadium with good legacy and does make the impression of a white elephant. Perhaps the upcoming World Athletics Championships will revive it.

As for football matches and development, the already large Worker's Stadium fits that purpose.

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It's partly true, some of the venues are abandoned but some of the pictures are misleading.

The OAKA even if not perfectly organized is continuously used at least as much as before the games. But they could have done much more and turn this architecture jewel to a great tourists attraction like the Munich olympic park.

The venues at Hellenicon are abandoned. The reason is that since then the Greek Government(s) fight about the use of this huge area. Many plans have been unveiled all of them have been rejected or forgotten. The reason is that this is a extraordinary big area. Locals want this are to become a Metropolitan Park that is totally bullish*t, others want this to become a business district but investors are skeptical because in Athens there is a height limit to build so at this moment you cant build Skyscrapers there. Its a complicated situation for a very long time and I partly understand the complexity. So pictures like those of the baseball venue are true.

The area of Faliron with the taekwondo veneu which is in use, the Peace and Friendship Stadium which is also in use and the Volleyball Venue (not in use) is undergoing a complete renovation, and this is how it going to look in a view years:

439ec77184a1741c995a737346082b5d_XL.jpg

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is financing the whole project and at this moment the New National Opera, New National Library and New National Cultural Park designed by Renzo Piano is on the way:

Image00001.jpg

and a lovely presentation video of this project:

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^^ A load of bull. Pardon the French. Look at the video, all it serves is a tourist attraction, even the architect regrets designing it. Having 1 or 2 major events a year (i.e single day events) does not make it a stadium with good legacy and does make the impression of a white elephant. Perhaps the upcoming World Athletics Championships will revive it.

As for football matches and development, the already large Worker's Stadium fits that purpose.

You've selectively read only part of what I've said. Beijing's Bird's Nest fits the criteria of a new "National Stadium" for the PRC. The Workers Stadium was built in 1959, and would have required a significant overhaul itself for be suitable for the Olympics. It's also in a part of Beijing, Sanlitun IIRC, which is quite a built up area and would have not allowed the cluster for the Park. I think everyone is in agreement that the Beijing Olympic Stadium is not currently used to the extent you'd expect from a stadium of its appearance or size, but sports and football are growing in China and no doubt it would play a role in a potential expansion of the national league and other events like IAAF 2015.

That aside - this is China. Culturally the symbolism of the venue itself is monumental, and perhaps like no other Olympic venue before. They were never going to built a temporary London style stadium, ever. They have the money and the resources, and they did it. The shoes are way too big, but the feet are still growing.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is financing the whole project and at this moment the New National Opera, New National Library and New National Cultural Park designed by Renzo Piano is on the way:

Pardon my ignorace, but is this foundation "donating" all this money to these new venues for these public organisations? That's some immense philanthropy.

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