2008-Olympics-Venues-Map

The top spots in China to be faster, higher and stronger.

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2008 Olympics Travel: Google Mapping All the Venues

Where: China
August 8, 2008 at 4:15 PM | by | Comments (0)

Just when our 2008 Olympics Venues Map started getting good, Google had to go and outshine us. The wizards over at the outfit's mapping division put together an awesome mash-up of the venues, events and medal winners for the Olympics, which you already know started today--or yesterday if you're checking the clock in Beijing.

Also included on the map are videos made with Google Earth that have the camera flying over 3D renderings of all the venues. Qinhuangdao Olympic Sports Centre Stadium, here we come!

Check the super-map here

Related Stories:
· Off to the Games! [Lat Long Blog]
· 2008 Olympics Venues Map [Jaunted]

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2008 Olympics Travel: Beijing National Indoor Stadium

Where: Beijing, China
August 7, 2008 at 2:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

This week we're mapping the top spots in China to be faster, higher and stronger.

The wee girls of gymnastics could get lost in Beijing National Indoor Stadium, also the sleek, glassed-in home of handball and trampoline. (Did you know trampolining has been an Olympic sport since 2000? Our childhoods were not in vain!)

Located just north of the Watercube, the solar-powered stadium was designed by the German firm Glöckner with the cooperation of the Eastern European collective the Munich Group.

Glöckner envisioned a steep-sided arena seemingly open to the heavens for "intensive tension between spectator and athlete." Judge for yourself with an animated stadium tour that will give you chills even if you're not Paul Hamm.

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2008 Olympics Travel: Laoshan Velodrome

Where: Beijing, China
August 6, 2008 at 2:02 PM | by | Comments (0)

This week we're mapping the top spots in China to be faster, higher and stronger.

Visitors will want to take off those pollution-proof masks to take in the stunning 250-meter wooden track at the Laoshan Velodrome, in western Beijing. Home to the track cycling disciplines, it was designed by Schuermann Architects, a German family firm that's designed more than 120 bike-racing venues worldwide.

Intentionally designed to mimic the shape of a bicycle wheel, the velodrome's structure is anchored by a central "hub" of steel cables that branch out to support the roof. The last thing cyclists need while speeding along the track is the harsh sun in their eyes, so a translucent oculus at the peak of the dome allows for plenty of natural light without the risk of dangerous glare.

The venue will seat up to 6,000 during the Olympics, some of whom will get to sit inside the track in a spectator pit. Outside, a reflecting pool and small park invite visitors to mingle, and nearby public transportation links make it easy to get home after events.

Related Stories:
· 2008 Olympics Venues Map [Jaunted]
· Beijing Olympics coverage [Jaunted]

[Photo: Schuermann Architects]

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2008 Olympics Travel: The Watercube

Where: Beijing, China
August 5, 2008 at 2:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

This week we're mapping the top spots in China to be faster, higher and stronger.

Next to the Beijing National Stadium on the Olympic Green, the Beijing National Aquatic Center looks like it might be soft to the touch or at least pop like bubble wrap. The PTW Architects/Arup-designed building has a polymer skin structured like the natural design of soap bubbles, which was assembled and then inflated to create the outer walls.

The Watercube is most impressive outside at night with its ethereal blue lights but holds an estimated 17,000 spectators; it covers 7.8 acres. Will this fascinating facility become the temple that Phelps built--or his inspiration to hang up the extra-long wetsuit?

After the jump, watch the architects' video to pretend you're inside the giant cube.

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2008 Olympics Venues: The Bird's Nest

Where: Beijing, China
August 4, 2008 at 10:35 AM | by | Comment (1)

This week we're mapping the top spots in China to be faster, higher and stronger.

The Beijing National Stadium is the mega-arena that will host the opening and closing ceremonies and the soccer final on August 23. You'll find it on the Olympic Green, a collection of venues and green space built specifically for the games a few miles north of the Forbidden City.

Designed by Swiss architects Herzog & De Meuron, officials say the Bird's Nest could host as many as 160,000 people for the opening ceremony on August 8, when the Olympic Green officially opens to the public.

How will they all get there? Beijing is planning 28 additional, direct bus routes to the stadium; regular service to the area includes 48 existing bus routes and three metro lines.

Related Stories:
· About 160,000 Expected at Olympic Opening [Xinhua]
· The China Syndrome [NYT]
· Beijing Olympics coverage [Jaunted]

[Photo: f u n k y !]