With the year of 2007 approaching, good news came from the construction sites of the Olympic projects — the membrane structure of the outside layer of the National Aquatics Center was completed on the morning of December 26.
Construction of the landmark project, also called the “Water Cube,” officially started on December 24, 2003. The work on concrete and steel structures was finished in July 2006. On August 1 this year, installation of cushions of membrane structure was officially launched.
With the closure of the outside membrane layer project, the installation of inside cushions will be under way, in a synchronized manner with the indoor fit-up and decoration. Installation of electromechanical equipment and pipes is currently going on and indoor fit-up and decoration will start by the end of the year. The whole project will be completed at the end of 2007.
In accordance with the plan, the venue test event will be launched at the National Aquatics Center in February 2008.
The material of membrane structure is called ETFE, or ethylene-tetra-fluoro-ethylene, used for the first time in China. It is also the largest and most complicated membrane system in a single building project internationally. The construction staff of the National Aquatics Center completed all works and fulfilled the goal as planned after overcoming many difficulties, successfully carrying out membrane structure research and independent innovative construction practice.