45 Abandoned Olympic Structures That Look Frozen In TimeBy Luis G
The Olympic Games are usually all the rage when they’re taking place. We’re plagued with news about them regularly. And sports fans simply can’t get enough. They’ve evolved over the years. Including all types of new regimes and sports while maintaining some of the old goodies. Modern fanfare events like pentathlon, athletics, golf, badminton, basketball, BMX Racing, gymnastics, and wrestling. As the years progress, they’re constantly adding new and outlandish disciplines to the roster. That’s the great thing about the games. They are not frozen in time. They constantly keep up with the times. That’s their main allure. All nations under one stadium acting like kids, playing the sports they love. The best athletes of each country are carefully selected to represent their homeland in the most demanding sports to have ever existed. The opening ceremony, the legacy left by the participants, and the end make it a magical happening, whether you are into sports or not. Today, we’re going to take a look at the aftermath of those games. What’s left after the clarion call and the fanfare dissipates? Just memories when gazing at those abandoned stadiums and venues our heroes once played in. These abandoned venues will leave you in total awe — and have you questioning why Hollywood isn’t using them as backdrops to slasher films.
Seattle Seahawks Stadium
Some stadiums on this list might be familiar to some of you since they’re old dames that once house the elite. The given name to this next one was the Kingdom, and it looks like something straight out of a fairy tale. It’s a great name for what it is, or better yet, what it was.
Why do we say “Was?” The reason is that due to constant problems with the ceiling, the building was demolished in the year 2000. Hence the past tense. In conclusion, it no longer exists due to construction downfalls. All we have are photographs such as this one.
Berlin 1936 Olympic Village
These games took place in Berlin, Germany. To say they were controversial would be underselling the point. Why? They are very notorious because they were held under the context and auspices of the Nazi party. Yup, Nazis. Adolf and his cronies used the games as cover to push forward their propaganda and their perceived superiority.
Jesse Owens came along, and well, the rest is history. He was an Afro-American field athlete that made the roadrunner look slow. Jesse, who was a black athlete, made history in a competition that Nazis sponsored. Ain’t karma great! The photo you saw above is a pic of one of the rooms of the Olympic Village in Berlin from said event.
Atlanta-Fulton stadium demolition
The 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games was one of the trademark events that marked the 90s, primarily in sports. It was a magnificent event under the reign of the Clinton administration, and the USA going went all out in their performance. The stadiums and villages were also superb.
The two stadiums in the photo above were demolished for a rather uncommon reason. They quite literally, following Joni Mitchel’s lyrics, need to put up a parking lot. That’s not a joke. The stadiums were demolished for parking space.
Sochi Olympics potholes
Russia is considered a powerhouse, both politically and in the military. They also house some rather famous people such as Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia, a couple of primo writers, Oh, and talented athletes. The 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games were used as a testament to this.
Nowadays, all that we can observe in Sochi, a city in Russia, are potholes in the streets and environmental destruction where there was once a home for all of the great athletes who desired to measure themselves alongside their elite competitors.
Astrodome in Houston
This colossus of a stadium was created in the 60s. It was used for different sporting events like baseball, American football, and basketball. It was a titan in its days. This image is shocking, to say the least, given how imposing it once was.
But, it was not only used as a stadium for ceremonies like these. What really makes this place stand out is that it was instrumental in relief aid during Hurricane Katrina. It housed and sheltered thousands of people after the catastrophe hit the United States.
1936 Olympics Diving Platform
By now, we all know that the 1936 Olympics took place under the umbrella of national socialism. Yup, the goons from Raiders of The Lost Ark. It was a controversial event. Nonetheless, it was historical and, despite what came after, rather awe-inspiring. Here, we have another postcard of its aftermath.
All we can see nowadays is grey giant edifications mostly marked by the passing of time. In the picture, we can observe the swimming pools and the public seats on the sides. They still even have a couple of trampolines standing.
There are many pictures of the ruins of what once was the center of the 1936 Olympic Village, as it is a place loaded with history. Now, the gloomy structures remain afloat, defying the passing of time. These pictures seem to be taken right out of a horror story.
Here you can observe that even the pastures have overtaken the whole structure. Swallowing up the edifice and blanketing the walls. Millions of vines wrap around the entire building. You can also be marvel at grey clouds and green trees that accentuate the ominous feeling you get from looking at it.
2004 Athens Softball Stadium
The 2004 Olympic Games were held in Athens, a city in Greece. It’s the place where the Olympics were born. These Olympic Games are recognized on account of a rather positive twist — they revitalized the national infrastructure and promoted its development.
These games raised the bar for future games to come. They were a benchmark that other future country sponsors followed. Most countries either mirror this event’s majesty or try to surpass it. This is one of the many vestiges that the national government is trying to refurbish.
Rio 2016 facility
Rio 2016 Summer Olympics set a precedent in South America. It was the first Olympic hosted in the region. A huge kudos for Rio. The other thing that really stood out was that they were actually held during winter in Brazil.
This may give you an idea about how hot Brazil can be. They held their Olympics in winter and people were wearing shorts! However, when the games ended, the majority of stadiums and venues were abandoned and left to waste away after Brazil won seven gold medals.
Once again, Atlanta headlines this piece. Why? Because there are so many abandoned Olympic hotspots. This image shows an African-American woman holding the Olympic torch while sprinting and dashing towards the pulpit. The mural somehow manages to maintain the original colors that make it so alluring.
What really adds to the contrast is the sign that reads “now leasing.” It’s sort of like seeing a bathroom sign next to the Mona Lisa. An alien concept. It doesn’t do the place’s history any justice. The passing of time can also be observed in the height of the plants against the structure.
Gro Bosnia Sarajevo
Believe it or not, the place you are about to see was once a bobsled track for the 1984 Winter Olympic Games that took place in Sarajevo, Bosnia. But now, it has become an abandoned spectacle, probably where teens meet up at night.
One of the reasons this place looks so neglected is largely due to the conflicts that took place in what was Yugoslavia in the 90s. This can be seen from the bullet holes that align the once icy track. Now, the track is seen covered with graffiti and overtaken by vegetation.
Dado Ruvic Bosnian slide
The great Sarajevo once again makes it onto our list. The picture below is even more eerie than the one above. In this case, instead of a bobsled track, we’re staring straight into the vertiginous dip of an abandoned ski jump ramp. Once more, the passing of time in its raw form takes center stage.
This great track lies on Mount Igman, which is close to Sarajevo. Because of the lack of use and upkeep, the remains of what was once a great and imposing ski jump platform is now a safety hazard — or a skateboarder’s dream come true. You be the judge.
The Silverdome (Michigan)
The Silverdome was an arena that opened its doors to the public in 1975 in Pontiac, Michigan. This stadium was also one of the largest stadiums in the National Football League (or NFL) at that time. It also had some great architectural features, making it a futuristic structure for its time.
It remained unused for plenty of years until it was finally demolished in 2018. It had undergone a previous partial demolition, but the building was a bit headstrong and stood up to the TNT blast. But after they brought in some stronger dynamite for assistance, it was completely demolished in the end.
Lake Tower (1996 rowing venue)
Once again, another portrait of the legendary landscape of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. A leftover postcard from those iconic 90s events. This picture does not look as grim as the others. It actually adds to the landscape and wonder of the area, if we say so ourselves.
You have just observed the former venue for rowing events of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games held in Atlanta, Georgia, in the United States. Multiple events were held here — and still are, as local universities and teams maintain the site.
Broken tennis net
How much does it cost to fix a tennis net? Or to take it down? This is just rampant neglect to the extreme. The place you are about to see went largely unused after the mass media event that it was built for took place — it wasn’t a long-term effective investment.
This court held tennis matches for the Atlanta Olympics. Titans pitted against the other. Now, all that stands is a broken net, weeds breaking the turf, and a scoreboard that’s never going to be repaired. The light blue bench is still intact, though!
“David Gray 2” (Beijing 2008 kayak venue)
Catch sight of this not-so-old facility that has been abandoned for years. This time, we are going to take you to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, one of the most expensive Olympics ever to take place. Here, kayak competitions and other rowing events were held.
What we can see is now an empty pool with nest-shaped figures spread throughout. The diverse areas of the pool look like an alien landscape. There is a steep bank on the side and a wall opposite to it, aching for water and some objective in life. It’s sad seeing something like this left to the elements, eventually becoming eyesores.
2008 Olympics Beach Volleyball venue
We cannot deny that Beach Volleyball is one of the most alluring disciplines to watch at the Olympics. Some of the most beautiful women, and men, compete on a sandy court, giving us a performance of a lifetime in the glistening sun. That is quite a sight, right?
Well, all the glamour and appeal associated with it, at least the venue, was abandoned the minute the medals were handed out. The colors look degraded, and the banners are torn to pieces. It’s a skeleton of its former self.
NY Mets Stadium
This image gives us a glimpse of the old New York Mets stadium, which was once called the Shea Stadium. It was an essential piece of history for an American favorite pastime, baseball, during its long and exciting heydays.
This magnificent stadium was an icon for that magnificent sport. Its golden years were in the mid-60s and was later refurbished in the early 00s. In 2009, time took its toll, and it got demolished – the management directors decided to move the team to another facility.
Atlanta 1996, we meet again! This next stadium was nicknamed The Cauldron — and it had a local reputation due to its Godzilla-like size. Today, the Atlanta Olympic Cauldron Tower is still available for the public to see and sometimes visit. It is located on Fulton Street. It is a local urban attraction.
We can appreciate one of its most nostalgic features in this gobsmacking image — the five Olympic Rings. They sit in the middle of the structure, now colorless, sunbleached, and bland. We can still read the sign that says “Atlanta 1996” to the left of them in its recognizable font.
Cortina D’ampezzo ski jump
Wooden, magnificent, and nestled inside a fairytale forest — The Cortina D’ ampezzo ski jump is one of those rare structures that seem to age like fine wine. It is a throwback to the 1956 Winter Olympics. A design during a simpler and elegant time.
Why was this competition particularly special? It is because, in this event, Andreas Dascher first implemented his technique of jumping with both arms stuck to the sides of the body, which became the status quo for later jump until the arrival of V-Style.
Cinema, red seats (1968 Olympics)
When we think of Olympic athletes, the terms that may pop in our heads might be “peak performance,” “sacrifice,” and “competition.” These daring heroes are usually ready for everything – Well, the reality is that they are also regular folks like you.
The picture above proves that point. Athletes need to unwind, stretch their legs, and snuggle up to a good movie with popcorn once in a while. Above is a pic of an abandoned cinema room from the 1968 Mexico Summer Olympic Games. It’s charmingly called “The Red Room.”
Unwanted mascots (2008 Olympics)
Another enticing thing about the Olympics that we can think of, other than watching athletes performing, the fanfare, pageantry, and yes, all attractive athletes are the chosen mascots. Each team has at least one. We can think of many examples, but we won’t get into that right now.
In the pic above, like a discarded Pokemon, we can see that sometimes, they are not as wanted or appreciated as they should be. Fighting against the encroaching vegetation, we can observe the two official 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics mascots turning to waste and becoming one with the vegetation.
Sarajevo Olympic monument
As you can already see, one of the Olympic homes that have suffered the most neglect due to the passing of time can be found in Sarajevo in Bosnia. To what extent? There are actually tours that take you into the abandoned structures.
As you can see, the monument above suffered from neglect, a rough climate, and the passing of time. The damage is so extensive that even the Olympic rings are on the verge of going amiss. It looks like something out of a primordial age – not the twentieth century.
Athens canoeing venue
The picture you are about to see can easily fool you. You might be tempted to believe that the following image of something leftover from the time of Socrates – an old Greek amphitheater, perhaps. But, the reality is rather shocking.
This used to be the water events venue of the 2004 Olympics Games in Athens, Greece. They were spectator seats for canoeing and kayaking. So, you were partly right. The Greeks were involved, just not the type that wore togas and preached on what it meant to be alive – a more simple time.
Train Stop (Munich 1972)
Munich is a place known for its technological advancements, high-quality standards of life, and German cars (the BMW headquarters are located there). Here, you can glimpse one of the overgrown train stations that were proposed specifically for the Olympics.
The Olympic Games that took place in 1972 are a bit of a sour topic for the organization. We all know why, and if you don’t, there’s a great film by Spielberg called Munich that we highly recommend. Some of the structures left over from that epoch have fallen into destruction, particularly the train stations.
2004 Athens swimming pool
Swimming is arguably one of the most-watched events when it comes to the Olympic Games. You would be tempted to think that such facilities are prone to be taken extra care of. Sadly, we are all wrong on this matter.
This pool was one of the most photographed places during that classic competition. Today, it has fallen to pieces due to improper care, debris, and evident vandalism. It used to be the official place for swimming events in the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics in Greece.
1936 Olympics swimming pool
Almost a century has passed since the swimming pool below actually housed any athletes. This little beauty hails from 1936 in Berlin, Germany. We can now witness its current state of abandonment for somewhat obvious reasons – time being the main culprit.
Here you can see that the walls have fallen to pieces and are missing sections, the ceiling is covered in mold, paint is chipping everywhere. It’s a ghost of what was once a prestigious venue. But the pool still remains there, which is groovy.
1936 Olympic Village
Here we have another picture of the remnants of the Olympic Village of the 1936 games that took place in Berlin. It’s an abandoned building where athletes once resided. As you can tell by the photo, they were not so keen to upkeep these structures.
Here we can bear witness that the building still stands tall, a product of great construction methods. A testament to the materials of those days. They just need a coat of paint and a bit of care. The place is massive, and some have even tried to refurbish it for housing.
Ski jump (Grenoble 1968)
Now, just because places are no longer taken care of or have shady stories behind them does not mean that we cannot enjoy the sight and splendor they have to offer. Some Olympic ghosts have that characteristic to them. Go ahead, and take a peek at the following landscape.
This view is from Grenoble, France, from the top of a ski jump platform that was used in the 1968 Winter Olympic Games. The view’s quite astonishing and a bit hair-raising, but out-of-this-world nevertheless. Just look at those pine trees…
It is no news that Sarajevo tends to be somewhat of a dark place with a checkered past – like the Olympics. They serve as an eerie reminder of what was once a prestigious event that is now a part of history that we can physically see.
This place is called the Sarajevo Tombstone for a reason. This graveyard was built where a great sports complex dedicated to the Winter Olympics of 1984 once stood. In the image, we can observe hundreds of small tombstones, some with flowers.
Athens 2004 Baseball Stadium seats
Athens is not exactly known for its baseball enthusiasm. They are crazy about football. So, it’s a bit odd finding a place like this in the middle of a city. This is an abandoned baseball stadium. One that saw fine figures crack their bats during the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens.
As you can very well see, the facility has seen better days. It’s a testament to Europe’s love for kicking a ball, not hitting it with a stick. We can see the classic blue plastic seats accompanied by old plastic bottles. It’s obvious that the place is vandalized and probably used for late-night meetings amongst teenagers.
Training pool, “Original” graffiti
Here we can see the training pool of the 2004 Olympic Games. Sadly, like so many entries, it is no longer being used. It is a sad sight to think that swimmers were trained day-in and day-out to become Olympic athletes.
In one of these pools, Aaron Peirsol won the Gold for the US. Now, it’s left with broken chairs and chipped paint. It also seems to be a vandal wonderland as many graffiti works are present here. At least some of the pool tiles remain intact.
1984 Sarajevo rings
This is one of those images that seems to be plucked straight out of a sci-fi film. It’s an antique structure left in Bosnia from the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo. It’s bizarre, eerie, and a little sad. It’s as if you stepped into a time machine.
What we can see in the picture are the iconic Olympic Rings from the event’s branding. We can observe the five staple rings representing a sport, plus the additional logo of those particular Olympic games. These really contrast with the grey pillar that they rest on.
2004 Taekwon-Do venue
Events such as Taekwon-Do or any event that involves beating the other up are quite popular in the Olympics. These athletes are ninjas of their field karate chopping their way towards gold. The physical aptitude needed is up there, making them some of the most enduring events.
This venue is no longer the grand structure and sanctuary it once was for the ninjas of the playing field. Now, it’s just a place to scramble about and get into mischief. Here we can see debris scattered around a lamppost near the lone lampost next to the abandoned venue.
2004 Kayak venue
Kayaking is also one of the most exciting sports to watch in the Olympics. It consists of very adept athletes cruising around strong currents of water built for the event specifically. They can majestically cute through these currents, making it look easy.
The stadium pictured above doesn’t even remotely resemble what it once was. It looks like something out of Mario Kart, the Mad Max edition. Today, the stadium is unfortunately no longer in use. Fun fact: the place has a somewhat spotty reputation as a makeshift skatepark. On some nights, you can witness punk music, beer kegs, and the sound of rolling wheels and crashing kids.
Soviet venue (Tallinn 1980)
The place you are about to see is abandoned and dirty. It looks like the backdrop of one of those end of the world movies. Nonetheless, with some proper maintenance, it has some potential. We should say a lot of maintenance. This was once the Soviet Venue for the 1980 Olympic Games that took place in Tallinn, Estonia.
The 80s were wild. And you can see by the color scheme. Even the Soviet Union wanted it to look like Studio 54. Now, it’s just creepy with the colorful leftovers and the grey sky. The debris of yesteryears mixed in with the architecture makes it look straight out of an a-ha music video.
2004 Athens Diving pool
Before this entry, we already bared witness to the way the Athens Olympic pool looked like years ago. Clearly, it was not in its best state or mildly pretty whatsoever. While this is not exactly attractive, it does hold some potential still.
This is the official venue for all of the Diving events that took place in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, the capital city of Greece. It’s now being refurbished and getting ready for its grand 2021 opening. They say that it’s really come together.
If you got somewhat tired of looking at ruined facilities one after the other due to the passing of time, this one is going to feel a breath of fresh air. This place is still oddly pretty even after all these years.
What you are looking at is the picture of the Olympic Park in Montreal, Canada. Montreal was the official home for the 1976 Summer Olympic Games. The place looks brand new and clean. You have to hand it to Canada. They really take care of their things.
1936 Olympic swimming pool
From what we have seen so far, Berlin holds some of the most barren facilities from all the other counterparts because it’s one of the oldest Olympic games that we cover on this list. The only way you can beat Berlin is to go to Greece and unearth one of those stadiums that first hosted the Olympics.
Some official Olympic venues, like this pool above, look like it is self-destructing because they were used as barracks both by the Germans soldiers, then by American soldiers, and, finally, by the Soviets.
USA Nansen Ski Jump
This next ski jump looks like it was built for skiers who can literally fly. It is a structure that has no words, and it has surprisingly held its ground since 1938. When looking at it, it’s hard to imagine that skiers once flew off of this grand structure.
This gigantic and vertigo-inducing ski jump is located in Milan, a town in New Hampshire, New England, in the United States. It is called the Nansen Ski Jump. Unfortunately, it went out of use in 1988, but it’s still there. And, for the daredevil skateboarder, it is a dream structure.
Fountain Athens 2004
If you’ve ever visited Athens and stayed for some time, you will notice that it’s a hodgepodge of different eras. One of them is the Olympics 2004. It looks like it’s frozen in time from all the abandoned Olympic Games facilities. The image you are about to see is a testament to them.
In the image, we can see the empty Olympic fountain. You can also see the outlines of some of the Olympic Rings with scattered pieces of debris on the ground. You will find diverse graffiti in its vicinity. We can also observe a bus passing by in front of it.
2004 Olympics swimming pool
Yes, another swimming pool. But aren’t they spellbinding? Here’s a more in-depth view of a swimming pool — with all its nasty sludge. This is once again the 2004 official Olympic swimming pool. If you want to soak in the glory of yesteryear, you can take a seat in the random computer chair pictures below.
Here, we have the point of view of the athlete, as the picture was taken behind the starting platform. It’s an imitation of what an athlete would be able to see if they were about to dive headfirst. However, we don’t think anyone will be using this platform anytime soon.
Detroit Tigers (Stadium)
This creepy image belongs to a stadium that was once the home of the Detroit Tigers, a top-rated baseball team. It was in use from the late 30s until the mid-70s. They are the oldest American League baseball team.
This place was even labeled as a Historic Site by the State of Michigan way back in 1975. However, due to external reasons, the historical patrimony was demolished in 2009. Many fans cried that day. There was even a candle-lit vigil.
Field hockey pitch (Athens)
Greece is known for its wines, swimming tournaments, great pita bread, but not for its love for hockey. Some places were abandoned and left behind, waiting to be repurposed into football arenas – one of the great past times the EU relishes in.
This is a field hockey pitch that also has noticeable and obvious signs of abandonment. Even if the field itself looks quite okay, the patches of fabric on the sides of the pitch are beginning to come apart – peeled off by the force of mother nature.
1936 Olympic Village houses
Even though numerous facilities that once belonged to the 1936 Olympics are abandoned, these particular houses somehow seem to withstand the test of time. These are the small chalets that once made up the Berlin Olympic Village. They still kept their structure.
We can see that many remain in somewhat habitable conditions, despite all that they have been through. They’ve housed refugees and even soldiers during WWII. In the picture, we can see five tiled houses with subtle shades of yellow paint on the exterior.