Designed by Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron for the 2008 Olympic Games, the locals nicknamed this stadium the “Bird’s Nest” before it was even completed. The bowl-shaped interior, roof, and staircases are integrated into the structure’s spatial grid-like formation, fashioned by overlapping steel trusses. The spaces between them are filled with a translucent membrane, just as birds stuff the empty spaces in their nests with materials. The stadium accommodates concerts and other special events, and will once again host the winter Olympics in 2022.

Beijing National Stadium: Beijing

Designed by Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron for the 2008 Olympic Games, the locals nicknamed this stadium the “Bird’s Nest” before it was even completed. The bowl-shaped interior, roof, and staircases are integrated into the structure’s spatial grid-like formation, fashioned by overlapping steel trusses. The spaces between them are filled with a translucent membrane, just as birds stuff the empty spaces in their nests with materials. The stadium accommodates concerts and other special events, and will once again host the winter Olympics in 2022.
Photograph by Xiaoyang Liu, Getty Images

9 Architectural Wonders Inspired by Nature

These biomimetic designs reflect the natural world.

Architects have long been inspired by nature. Evidence of its influence can be seen throughout the ages, from the natural symbolism of Ancient Greek and Roman architecture to the works of 20th-century visionary Frank Lloyd Wright, who designed buildings to complement the natural landscape.

New technologies are now helping architects recreate complex structures found in the nature by using modern construction methods and materials. Biomimetic architecture draws its influence from the Earth. From India’s dreamlike Lotus Temple to Singapore’s spiraling Helix Bridge, discover man’s relationship with nature at these architectural wonders.

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