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Stadio Olimpico di Roma

The Olympic Stadium in Rome was built in 1953. It is situated within the Foro Italico frame and it served as one of the venues during the 1960 Olympic Games.

The stadium was designed by the architect Annibale Vitellozzi. It flaunts on a flat piece of land between the Tiber river and the Monte Mario hill. It looks like a big uncovered bowl that delicately sinks in the ground in order not to disturb its beautiful surroundings with its immense size.

The Olympic Stadium of Rome is characterized by a continuous ring of tiers. They gently follow the course of the athletics track and discretely rise over 13 meters (43 feet) only. The pillars that support the roof structure articulate the oval framework of the tiers.

During the 1990 World Cup the stadium was greatly transformed. A roof was added and most of the stands were reconstructed, however, retaining the original idea to create a unique bowl in an elliptical shape.

The project foresaw the demolition of two tribunes and to reconstruct them 9 meters (30 feet) closer to the playing field. The main tribune, which was also reconstructed, followed this framework, while the opposite tribune on the east-side, called Tribuna Tevere (Tiber Stand), was raised on the original structure. As a consequence, the Tribuna Tevere is the only element, both at the inside and the outside, that remained of the original stadium projected during the fifties. Presently, one can see the space difference between the Tribuna Tevere and all the other tribunes that were remodelled.

Nevertheless, the space inside the stadium offers a great effect. It is dominated by the parabolic profile of 80 consecutive rows and the immense roof structure. The roof is supported by 12 concrete pillars and a ring of rectangular supporting beams characterized by tri-angular sections. In between a membrane of semitransparent Teflon is inserted. It floats on a secondary structure for 45 meters (147 feet) towards the playing field.

© by Angelo Spampinato

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