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Olympic Swimming Facility – Munich, Germany

Building: Olympic Swimming Facility
Location: Munich, Germany
Architects: Behnisch + Partner and Frei Otto
Engineers: Bergermann und Partner and Auer + Weber
Cost: 1.35 billion German Marks to complete
Construction Time: 1968 to 1971


Light, transparent roofs that are both open and yet provide protection span the Olympic Park with the Olympic stadium, the Olympic Arena and the Olympic Swimming Hall. A cable net structure consisting of many almost regular saddleshaped surfaces framed by edge cables is suspended at several points from masts.

They are situated behind the grandstand, or are supported on the inside by cable-supported props, and then back anchored. The geometrical precision, the cutting pattern and the prefabrication asked for totally new solutions. This resulted in a first and large-scale computer application for such problems of cast steel in structural engineering.

Edge cables: locked coil ropes
Guy cables: parallel strand bundles
Joints and connectors: cast steel
Masts: steel tubes
Cover: acrylic glass (Plexiglas)

Pneumatic ETFE transparent connection of steel facade to membrane rod. Suspension of inner membrane from cable net with spring-steel clover leaf to distribute loads.

(Source: “Renewal of the Suspended Ceiling at the Olympic Swimming Facility in Munich” DETAIL 4 (2008): 398-405. Print.)

Written by Joshua Petry

January 26, 2012 at 6:47 pm

Posted in Uncategorized