Olympic Stadium (The Big O)

Capacity66 308
Country Canada
ClubsMontreal Alouettes
Inauguration 17.06.1976
Renovations 1991
Design Roger Taillibert
Cost 770 mln $
Address 4549 Pierre de Coubertin Avenue, Montreal, Quebec H1V 3N7
Notice the club uses this stadium only in the play-offs


Olympic Stadium – stadium description

One of most unusual stadiums in history also became one of the most controversial. Paying for it took 30 years while construction is not only unconvetional, but also problematic. Deisgned by famous French architect Roger Tallibert it represents organic architecture with shapes deriving from animal and floral characteristics.

It was first discussed widely before 1976 Olympics that were played here. Due to delays it wasn't fully finished then, without tower and roof over playing field. That part of the cover was initially planned as retractable roof, moved with steel ropes overhanging from 175-meter tower. That system proved impossible to implement, however, and pitch cover became permanent. As unique as it was, the constructon was also a problem. In 1986 part of the tower fell off onto the pitch during game. A yer leater membrane was installed over the playing field and started leaking and tearing soon afterwards. Despite repairs, after 12 years it fell down onto the field while preparations for an auto show were ongoing. After several more works around it, the roof was judged unsafe in 2010.

High costs of construction itself were over the years doubled by repair costs, allowing for the stadium to be paid off no sooner than 30 years from opening. When all costs were paid in 2006 the bill stood at C$ 1,47 bln, over 10 times the estimated value from 1970. Because of these issues people changed its nickname „The Big O” to „The Big Owe”.



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