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the world is round.. | by Aristotle Liu
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the world is round..

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Millennium Dome aka The O2 Centre - London, Greenwich

 

13s f/20, ISO 400

 

The dome is the largest of its type in the world. Externally, it appears as a large white marquee with twelve 100 m-high yellow support towers, one for each month of the year, or each hour of the clock face, representing the role played by Greenwich Mean Time. In plan view it is circular, 365 m in diameter — one metre for each day of the year — with scalloped edges. It has become one of the United Kingdom's most recognisable landmarks. It can easily be seen on aerial photographs of London. Its exterior is reminiscent of the Dome of Discovery built for the Festival of Britain in 1951.

The architect was Richard Rogers. He and the contractor was a joint venture company, McAlpine/Laing Joint Venture (MLJV) formed between Sir Robert McAlpine and Laing Management. The building structure was engineered by Buro Happold, and the entire roof structure weighs less than the air contained within the building. Although referred to as a dome it is not strictly one as it is not self-supporting, but is a mast-supported, dome-shaped cable network. For this reason, it has been disparagingly referred to as the Millennium Tent.

The canopy is made of PTFE-coated glass fibre fabric, a durable and weather-resistant plastic, and is 52 m high in the middle. Its symmetry is interrupted by a hole through which a ventilation shaft from the Blackwall Tunnel rises.

Apart from the dome itself, the project included the reclamation of the entire Greenwich Peninsula. The land was previously derelict and contaminated by toxic sludge from an earlier gasworks that operated from 1889 to 1985. The clean-up operation was seen by the then Deputy Prime Minister Michael Heseltine as an investment that would add a large area of useful land to the crowded capital. This was billed as part of a larger plan to regenerate a large, sparsely populated area to the east of London and south of the River Thames, an area initially called the East Thames Corridor but latterly marketed as the "Thames Gateway".

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Taken on October 1, 2009