Olympic arenas lying desolate and abandoned

The Olympics is supposed to stimulate growth and development, and arenas are supposed to last for a generation. They do last, but sometimes only as abandoned shells. Even the Winter Olympics of 2014 now seems a distant memory, with empty arenas left idle. These shocking pictures show the once gleaming sports palaces of the Olympic park lying in ghostly silence.

What structures from Rio will join this list?

1. Athens, Greece — home of the 1896 Summer Olympics

Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

A podium is shown inside the marble Panathinaikon stadium in Athens, Greece.

Milos Bicanski / Getty Images

The Olympic rings outside of the Helliniko Olympic complex is seen in ruins.

Angelos Tzortzinis / AFP / Getty Images

Seats are pictured at the disused Olympic hockey stadium.

Milos Bicanski / Getty Images

A chair is left discarded among rubbish in a swimming pool of the former Olympic Village in Athens, Greece.

Milos Bicanski / Getty Images

Palms and other wild vegetation now inhabit the beach volleyball Olympic stadium in Athens.

Angelos Tzortzinis / AFP / Getty Images

The Olympic softball stadium in Athens.

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Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

The stands of the abandoned Olympic Canoe and Kayak Slalom Centre at the Hellenikon Complex in Athens.

Yannis Behrakis / Reuters

Garbage floats in a deserted swimming pool at the Olympic Village in Athens.


2. Berlin, Germany — home of 1936 Summer Olympics

Ullstein Bild / Getty Images

Deserted houses for the athletes in the former Olympic Village of the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin.

Flickr: safefire

An abandoned swimming pool from the ‘36 Olympic Games in Berlin.

Ullstein Bild / Getty Images

Deserted athletes quarters in the former Olympic Village of the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin.

Ullstein Bild / Getty Images

A peeling Soviet mural is still visible in the former Olympic Village of the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin.


3. Atlanta, Georgia — home of the 1996 Summer Olympics

Reuters Photographer

The Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, used as a Centennial Olympic venue in Atlanta, Georgia, begins to fall after 350 pounds of explosives detonate in 1997.


4. Beijing, China — home of the 2008 Summer Olympics.

David Gray / Reuters

Chinese tourists look through a security fence at the National Stadium, also known as the “Bird’s Nest”, which was the venue for the athletics and the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

David Gray / Reuters

A sign stands at a deserted field showing where the stadium for the 2008 Olympic Games baseball competition once stood in central Beijing.

David Gray / Reuters

The 2008 Beijing Olympics venue for the beach volleyball competition lies deserted and unmaintained.

David Gray / Reuters

A lone dog sits atop glass plates at a deserted field that was once where the 2008 Olympic Games baseball competition was held.


5. Sarajevo, Bosnia — home of the 1984 Winter Olympics

Amel Emric / AP

A concrete podium for winners with the text “Winter Olympic Games 1984” stands abandoned at Mt. Igman, near the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo.

Dado Ruvic / Reuters

The disused bobsleigh track from the Sarajevo 1984 Winter Olympics is seen on Mount Trebevic, near Sarajevo.

Dado Ruvic / Reuters

The Olympic rings are seen on the disused ski jump from the Sarajevo 1984 Winter Olympics.

Dado Ruvic / Reuters

Downhill bikers train on the disused bobsled track from the 1984 Sarajevo Winter Olympics.

Amel Emric / AP

Graffiti by London creative collective The Lurkers is written on a destroyed hotel at Mount Igman.

Dado Ruvic / Reuters

A dog walks past the Olympic snowflake logo on the wall of the Kosevo stadium, the venue of the opening ceremony for the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo.




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