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New York Architecture firm designs speed skating arena for Winter Olympics

on Tuesday,January 19,2010 23:01

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The XXI Winter Olympics are coming to Vancouver next month, and for New York-based Architecture firm Cannon Design it will be the ultimate culmination of all their hard work.

Cannon is responsible for the Richmond Oval, a long track ice rink designed to host speed skating events for this year''s Olympic Games and competitions yet to come. The $200 million structure contains more than a half a million square feet of space to accommodate crowds of spectators and international television crews.

The designers took great efforts to make the building a truly unique structure by incorporating native and sometimes abnormal building materials including using recycled wood that had been damaged by beetles to serve as trusses and support structures.

Other aspects of the building were inspired by Canada''s native wildlife.

"Some of the initial concepts that we had in developing the overall form of the roof had to do with bringing a lot of elements of fluid motion, reaching back to cores like the heron, which is an indigenous and common species in the Vancouver area," said Peter McCarthy, one of the designers working for Cannon. "It''s sort of graceful and fluid motion in flight and to walk in and see it constructed in this immense scale was pretty fantastic."

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