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Big Air venue of 2022 Winter Olympics completed



The first newly built venue of Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games, Shougang Big Air, was officially completed on Oct 31, and is now basically qualified as a competition venue.

It will be home of ski jumping and freestyle skiing and will also be the birthplace of four new gold medals at the 2022 Winter Olympics.

The Shougang Big Air was designed by Atelier TeamMinus of the Architectural Design and Research Institute of Tsinghua University Co Ltd, a company subordinated to Tsinghua Holdings Human Settlement Construction Group, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tsinghua Holdings Co Ltd.   

The Big Air’s slope is located in the Shougang Industrial Park, on the south bank of Qunming Lake and the southwest side of the cooling towers.

The security zone is designed to surround Qunming Lake. The zone is 13.2 hectares in total, with 34,900 square meters at the front of the house and 97,800 sq m at the back. The slope itself is approximately 5,500 sq m, including the landing area.

The slope is 30 m away from the cooling towers, and 25 m away from the Fengtai-Huailai Railway.

The layout direction of the slope is 10 degrees to the east by south. It takes the sunshine, the wind direction and reflection off the lake’s surface into consideration as much as possible. Its total length is about 160 m, while the height of the starting area is 47.4 m, the take-off point is 18.9 m and the ending area is minus 4 meters. The total drop is 51 m with the highest point rising to 61 m.

The south side of the ending area is the athletes’ passage and the mixed zone. The timing and scoring point is located at the southeast side of the ending area. The east side is the location of seats for the commentators and the northeast side is the awarding zone.

Beneath the slope are some temporary facilities for offices and event management.

Spectators will enter the security zone by walking along the north side of Qunming Lake. The temporary facilities are built on the land around the cooling towers. Large areas of the hotel provide the required space for various functions.

The backyard is located in a renovated oxygen factory complex. It will serve the public as the entrance, distributing square, audience service facilities, ticketing, canteen, medical treatment, merchandising and sponsors exhibition hall during the games.

The oxygen factory’s main building will be renovated into an audience service center while cooling pump station will be converted for check-ins. The former air separation column will provide camera spots for OBS relay.

As the world’s first permanent venue for snowboarding, the Big Air project adopts an up-to-date Big Air track curve, a product of all the latest competitive sports research results related to that sport.

Located in the Shougang Industrial Park, all the supporting facilities of the project are renovated from the industrial heritages in Shougang Group’s cooling towers area, except the slope itself.

The project has created a new attraction in Beijing by integrating Big Air, a popular sport among the young, with competition venues, industrial heritage reuse and urban renewal, the first such development practice in the history of the Winter Olympics.

The project was highly appreciated by International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and the Secretary General of the International Ski Federation, Sara Lewis. Bach hailed it as an ideal interpretation of the IOC’s 2020 Agenda.

The project promises vast possibilities for more training and events after the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. The latest track profile design and integrated technologies, especially the possibility of sharing the track with aerials, represent an up-to-date level in Big Air.

The design of the slope is vitalized by the flying apsaras, a symbol seen in murals in Dunhuang's Mogao Grottoes. It helps to create an ethereal feeling of flying not only because the figures of apsaras fit the curve of the Big Air slope but also because both the flying aspasras in Chinese and Big Air in English have a connotation related to flying in the air, adding a distinctive Chinese element to this modern sports event.