The swimming pool in the 1936 Olympic village
The swimming pool in the 1936 Olympic village

Haunting shots of lost Olympic venues

Countries spend fortunes preparing for Olympics, and when the show's over, what often gets left behind isn't a pretty picture.

These stunning images from past Winter and Summer Games showing the derelict ruins from the likes of Berlin 1936, Sarajevo 1984 and Turin 2006 have to be seen to be believed, and should act as a warning to Tokyo 2020 organisers.

The Sun revealed what some of the venues look like now, including one former athletes' village in Turin that is now a refugee camp.

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SAREJVEO 1984

In February 1984, Sarajevo and Bosnia-Herzegovina played host to the Winter Games.

However, most of the venues were destroyed during Bosnia's war from 1992-1995 and were never rebuilt.

This included a disused ski jump, Olympic accommodation for athletes and a hotel left in ruins.

Worse still, a podium from that Winter Olympics was used ten years later as a place of execution for Bosnian Muslims and a hotel was turned into a prison.

The abandoned shell of a hotel constructed for the 1984 Winter Olympics
The abandoned shell of a hotel constructed for the 1984 Winter Olympics

 

Children gather at foot of the 1984 Olympic Ski jump hill at Igman
Children gather at foot of the 1984 Olympic Ski jump hill at Igman

TURIN 2006

In the second Winter Games ever to be held in Italy, it was the Germans who were the most successful and remembered.

But what was the Olympic village in Bardonecchia where their athletes relaxed and enjoyed downtime, is now a refugee camp.

Over 1000 migrants now live in the homes, according to reports, and the living conditions are said to be extremely poor.

This was the Turin athletes village but now residents include more than 1000 refugees and migrants.
This was the Turin athletes village but now residents include more than 1000 refugees and migrants.

BERLIN 1936

The notorious Summer Games in Germany, which was under Nazi rule at the time, has left nasty scars of that time with its abandoned sports venues.

Halls which used to house athletes were later used as barracks for the German army, and after that Russian officers resided there from 1945.

Swimming pools and other areas of the House of Nations have also been left to rot.

 

 

BEIJING 2008

It's amazing what can happen in twelve years, especially in a country that prides itself on its infrastructure.

Beijing 2008 was believed to have cost AU$47.6 billion in total and it was a memorable Games.

However, a former course for the kayaking competition has been left deserted.

A beach that was built for volleyball is disused and dilapidated, and the baseball park has also seen better days.

 

 

ATLANTA 1996

The saddest legacy of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games still sits unused and looks in a very sorry state.

Some 15,000 people crammed into the Herndon Stadium in the US city for a hockey game between Great Britain and the Netherlands.

It belonged to the Morris Brown College, however when they ran into financial difficulties the school was closed down.

The stadium has been left gutted by vandals and is covered in graffiti and piles of trash.

IHerndon Stadium, home of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games field hockey events sits vacant in Atlanta.
IHerndon Stadium, home of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games field hockey events sits vacant in Atlanta.

ATHENS 2004

Hosting the Olympics means countries spend an absolute fortune building the right venues and making them safe enough for fans to enjoy.

Greece spent $11.9 billion on bringing the Olympics home, but since their economic frailties post Olympic Games there has been no further investment on stadiums.

And they're doing little in the upkeep of what already exists, with rotting softball and baseball venues just some of the eyesores.

The former Olympic Village in Athens
The former Olympic Village in Athens

CORTINA D'AMPEZZO 1956

Still a popular ski resort in northern Italy, Cortina d'Ampezzo 1956 was dominated by the Soviet Union, who won seven gold medals.

The Ice Stadium, the Eugenio Monti bobsleigh run and the disused ski jump Trampolino Olimpico Italia were prime areas where events took place.

The latter has aged well and there's a plush lawn underneath where skiers would land their jumps.

However, the ramp does look like it dates back to the 1950s and it appears to be completely frozen in time.

The ski jump for the 1956 Olympics in the city of Cortina d'Ampezzo, Veneto, Italy
The ski jump for the 1956 Olympics in the city of Cortina d'Ampezzo, Veneto, Italy

RIO 2016

Four years on and the biggest casualty from the Summer Games of 2016 is the Olympics Aquatics stadium, which was supposed to be demolished.

However, it sits abandoned at the Olympic Park in Rio de Janeiro and puddles of water can be found inside and outside the venue, exposing zika and dengue risks.

Also, three mini-basketball, football fields and a skate park that were installed are now disused by the locals.

The mostly abandoned Olympic Aquatics stadium at the Olympic Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The mostly abandoned Olympic Aquatics stadium at the Olympic Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

This was originally published in the The Sun and republished with permission

 

 

The murky waters of an abandoned training pool for athletes at the Olympic village in northern Athens
The murky waters of an abandoned training pool for athletes at the Olympic village in northern Athens
In the months following the 2016 Olympic Games, very few events have been organised in the Olympic Park venues.
In the months following the 2016 Olympic Games, very few events have been organised in the Olympic Park venues.

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