Turin: the City that Made It Through the Post-Olympic Blues


After all this talk about former Olympic cities not faring well after the dust settles and the huge crowds leave once the events end and the stands empty out, all in relation to speculation for what will happen when this occurs in Beijing in just a couple of months, it’s good to see that the post-Olympic-depression doesn’t affect all cities. Such is the case with Turin, who hosted the Winter Olympics two years ago, which is profiled by Architectural Record in a piece that shows how the city worked with its sudden adoption of a bunch of new parks, venues, and miscellaneous expensive buildings. Turns out, the city’s government was smart both before and after, laying the ground work to re-commission all of the structures into things that would benefit Turin, not just sit there collecting dust and eating up tax dollars. Here’s a bit about one of the largest buildings:

Indeed, the centrally located, 13,000-seat Palasport Olimpico has been a hot venue. In 2007, it was booked 200-plus days for corporate functions, concerts, sporting games, and other events; the foundation hopes to boost that activity by 50 percent this year. Moreover, the city is building on that momentum by constructing a swimming pavilion on an adjacent site. Also designed by Isozaki and Maggiora, the new pavilion will serve as a visual counterpoint to the Palasport Olimpico, taking its straightforward rectilinear volume, tilting it upward on one side, and topping the structure with a folded roof. The 20-million-euro project should be finished by 2009.

Of note, if you’re on an Olympic building kick that you don’t want to let go of, here’s an interesting piece from NPR‘s Lisa Chow about how things are shaping up, modern architecture-wise, in China these days. Some good quotes by Rem Koolhaas therein, if that helps perk your interest.