The O2, London
What was once the Millenium Dome, symbol of a prosperous future, is now The O2, a huge music venue and entertainment complex.
Designed by Richard Rogers , the Dome was built to house an exhibition celebrating the dawn of the third millenium. The project attracted controversy regarding its cost, the nature of the exhibits it contained during the year it was open, as well as the challenge of finding a use for the largest single-roofed structure in the world after its closure.
I go past this edifice every day on the way to work and never stop marvelling at its scale and boldness which was once a sign of optimism, then embarassment, and now everyday leisure needs.
Once inside there is a Vue cinema, said music arenas, and a plethora of eateries, from Pizza Express to Nandos, tarted up with some palm trees and faux-Art Deco facades.
The original structure still looms above as you follow the circular routes around the building- the distinctive yellow pylons holding up the tent-like roof are visible, sometimes even in the restaurants.
It is strange to see such an ambitious project turned into a glorified mall.