"TORINO OLYMPIC STRUCTURES OFFER CONTRAST TO PIEMONTE'S BAROQUE "
TORINO OLYMPIC STRUCTURES OFFER CONTRAST TO PIEMONTE’S BAROQUE ARCHITECTURE When Piedmont, Italy and its capital city Torino (Turin) host the 2006 Winter Olympics, all eyes will focus on the cultural blessings this region provides - including its stunning architecture. In addition to its 2,000 year old classical piazzas and castles, the combination of baroque and modern thought can be seen in the evolving cityscape spectacled by new and daringly refurbished Olympic venues. Scheduled to be completed by fall 2005, some of the new structures are post-industrial refurbishments, where redesign is under the careful eye of the world’s top architects. The building projects will cost approximately 1,150 million Euro of public and 480 million Euro of private funds. Venues merge the cultural importance of Piedmont with the modern necessities of today’s sports arena requirements, guaranteeing the best of the Games and enriching the whole region. These modern masterpieces will offer a stark contrast to the baroque influences of the past. The significance of the baroque style is clear in Piedmont’s Piazzas, squares where the unassuming, yet sophisticated populace gather. The largest and perhaps most elegant, the Piazza Castello in Torino (Turin), will be the location of elaborate Olympic medal ceremonies. Looming above the spectacles is the Palazzo Madama, a 30-meter high castle, where generational updates are evident through the Roman and Renaissance textures. A visitor returning to Piedmont and Torino (Turin) after many years will marvel at the changes. The Olympic construction has created a contrast of modern culture and 2,000 years of tradition. Every Friday afternoon visitors can tour the building sites of the 2006 Winter Olympics and watch how the underground, the connecting line, the hockey stadium, the ice rink and the sailing center come into being. THE OLYMPIC VILLAGE The future home to 2,500 members of the Olympic community is the Olympic Village. The focus-point of the Olympic Village is an impressive arched bridge-way hovering over what was formally a Turin marketplace. The village is located in front of the “Lingotto Complex” and will include the original old Mercanti Generali, which will be restored to its former glory. A group coordinated by architect Benedetto Camerana developed a system that encompasses energy saving, biodynamic quality and pollution source elimination, making the structures examples of modern day environmental sustainability. THE PALAVELA The Palavela was originally built in the 1960s as part of the celebrations of the Century of Italian unification and is one of the region’s most important structures. Refurbishment will be overseen by architects Gae Aulenti and Arnaldo De Bernardi, their first work in the sports sector as the venue will host figure skating and short track competitions. Under the sail shaped roof conceived with three arches touching the ground, The Palavela is actually a building within a building. 23 www.regione.piemonte.it/internazionale THE OVAL ICE RINK Designed by the architects HOK Sport from London and Pino Zoppini from Mailand, The Oval is a futuristic structure that will host the speed skating competitions and is designed to be the best skating facility in the world. It is being built in the Scalo Lingotto area, connecting to the current trade fair structure without any internal columns enabling maximum space availability. THE PALAHOCKEY The Palahockey is designed by Japanese architect Arata Isozaki. The building is minimalist with an innovative structure, where its steel will mirror the surroundings ensuring it is in harmony with the planned extensive area of urban greenery and landscaping. After hosting various Olympic events, the building will be used for sport events, concerts, shows and exhibitions and will seat 17,500 spectators. STADIO OLYMPIC Stadio Olympic is the site of the opening ceremonies. Formally a soccer stadium commissioned in 1932, the restoration includes the addition of 44 sky-boxes and glass windows matching the original design. 24 www.regione.piemonte.it/internazionale