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The Olympic Stadium is a sports stadium in Berlin. There have been two stadia on the site: the present facility, and one that was built for the 1916 Summer Olympics. The current

Building of the Week: The Oplympic Stadium Originally build for the Summer Olympics in 1916. Later rebuild by Adolf Hitler as a place for propaganda. Today it houses various events including the German League Cup Final.

Olympiastadion was originally built for the 1936 Summer Olympics. Both were designed by members of the same family.

Aside from its use as an Olympic stadium, the Olympiastadion has a strong footballing tradition. Historically, it is the ground of club Hertha BSC. It was also used for 3 matches in the 1974 FIFA World Cup. It hosted six matches, including the final, in the 2006 FIFA World Cuo and was renovated for that reason. The German Cup final match is held each year at the Olympiastadion. The stadium sees use in other sports as well; at one point it held the world record for the attendance of a baseball game, thought to be over 110,000.

In 1912, during the Summer Olympics, Berlin was designated by the International Olympic Committee to host the 1916 Summer Olympics. The government hired architect Otto March. March decided to bury the

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stadium in the ground (“Erdstadion”,

to be used as a practice target for

in German). The project became the

shooting with anti-tank ammunition.

biggest sports stadium in the world

The old bell survives to this day and

at that time with a capacity of 40,000

serves now as a memorial.

spectators.

The Olympiastadion was one of the However, the Olympic Games of

few buildings that survived not just

1916 were cancelled due to World

in a recognizable form, but almost

War I. But in 1931, the International

untouched after the Second World

Olympic Committee made Berlin

War. It only suffered the impact of

the host city of the 11th Summer

machine gun shots.

Olympics.

The most significant battle around When the Nazis came to power in

the Olympiastadion was in April

Germany (1933), they decided to use

1945 when the Soviet army fought to

the Olympic Games for propaganda

capture it. This was during the great

purposes. Architect Werner March

final battle of the Second World War

remained in charge of the project,

in Europe, withh the total invasion of

assisted by his brother Walter March

Berlin as the Allies’ target.

Construction took place from 1934 to 1936. When the Reichssportfeld was finished, it was 1.32 square

On July 3, 2000, the renovation

kilometres (326 acres).

began. On January 9, 2002, construction workers found an unexploded World War II bomb

The Bell Tower was the only part

buried beneath a section of seating.

of the Reichssportfeld that was

It was detonated outside the stadium

destroyed in the war. The Olympic

by Berlin police.

Bell (which had survived the fire and remained in its place in the tower) fell 77 metres and cracked and has been unable to sound since then. In 1956 the bell was rescued, only in order

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A quick search in the iPhone App Store.

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Find out what you’re looking at with Architure for iPhone by Matt Rosoff

When I first heard about this

reservations, among other things

Price: $5

application, I was not really

implies that you must take pictures

Where to buy: App Store

enthusiastic. Of course I wanted

straight on the building from a

Rating: √ √ √ √

to try it, so I bought the app. for

distance of about 5 meters. But if

$5 because I was going to Berlin

you do so it works 100% and you

anyway. And I must say, I have not

are happy every time it succeeds.

regretted it even once. I quickly became quite fond of Architure. It is obviously a bit of a disadvantage that it only works in Berlin, but if It is actually very simple. What you

you are planning to visit Berlin, I will

do is that you are standing in front of

certainly recommend you to buy this

Reichstag for example and you want

application. I also expect that the

to know more about this building.

concept soon will spread to other

That is why you take a picture with

great cities.

your iPhone and send it. A few seconds after you get a description of Reichstag. You can then get more details if you also possess an iPad.

I must admit that after I had this success experience, I took pictures of almost all the buildings associated with Architure just because it worked. There are a few

And I must say, I have not regretted it even once. I quickly became quite fond of Architure.

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Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit tries out Architure In front of the Reichstag. By Anne Dam.

What do you think of the new

Do you think that Architure will

application for iPhone?

encourage tourists to visit Berlin?

“I think it is brilliant. It’s a new and

“That is likely. If you are interested

modern method to collect the

in architectonic structures and their

history of Berlin. Today you can have

history you probably already know

everything in your phone - camera,

that Berlin would be a great place

mail and music. Why not also have

to pay a visit. And if you even have

information guides?”

an application on your phone that can enlighten you with a few clicks, I think many people would love that.”

Do you have an iPhone yourself? “No, I am not that modern (laughing). But I know some who does that have

So, now that you’ve tried the

used the application.”

application, how do you think the future is for Architure? “I think Architure has a very bright

I have an iPhone. Would you like to

future. It will hopefully attract young

try Architure?

people to be more interested in the

“Oh yes. Let me see if I can work

history of the city. Also when the

that technique.”

application covers other cities, it will

Klaus is now handling my iPhone and looks quite impressed. “Wow, this is nice. It is actually very user friendly.”

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be exciting. I know I would love to try out Architure in Paris. But first of course, I would have to buy me an iPhone.”

...this is nice. It is actually very user friendly.


Klaus Wowereit, age 57, born in Berlin

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Architure