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From vegetable field to bird's nest: witnessing the birth of the national stadium in Beijing

August 3rd, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

Many of you perhaps have already seen the stunning computer rendered image, shown above, of the national stadium, better known as the bird’s nest. But do you wonder what it looks like during the seven years of building?

Recently, an amateur photographer Xu Xinqiang 徐信强 put together a collection of photos he took of the bird’s nest at all stages of building. You can find more details at his blog.

The following 14 photos are the ones hand picked by Xu to show the changing scenes out of his bedroom window, which faces the site of the national stadium, over seven years. The first one was taken in September 2001.

  1. DJ
    August 3rd, 2008 at 02:49 | #1

    By the way, it is also interesting to check out the sky view (or lack of) in these photos. The last one is encouraging, isn’t it?

  2. Netizen
    August 3rd, 2008 at 12:11 | #2

    A great series of photos. After the games, maybe they should put a cover on top. Like those covers on convertable, lightweight but can block the rain.

  3. Netizen K
    August 4th, 2008 at 15:25 | #3

    It’s forcasted weather is not good in the opening day. A cover on top is needed more, it seems.

  4. Charles Liu
    August 4th, 2008 at 20:34 | #4

    According to a Discovery Channel program the retractable roof was scrapped after delays, bugdget overrun, and question of safety. The simpler design was safer, also improved lighting (larger opening in the center).

  5. S.K. Cheung
    August 4th, 2008 at 23:04 | #5

    Neat progression of photos. The change in the background skyline also seems to reflect the growth of Beijing over the last 7 years. Impressive indeed.

    Too bad the roof didn’t work out. But a retractable roof I imagine would pose enormous structural and engineering challenges given the roof being shaped concave upwards.

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