Bird's Nest in the news

November 06, 2009 | Posted by Chris

The famous Bird's Nest national stadium in Beijing has been making headlines since it was disclosed that the Chinese government has assumed control of its finances, according to the AFP. In stark contrast with the news it generated last summer during the summer Olympics when anything seemed possible, the Bird's Nest is presently reported to have serious solvency issues that in August forced state-owned investment company CITIC Investment Holdings to hand over management of the stadium to the government. It's reported that the Bird's Nest costs about $30,000 USD each day to maintain, amounting to about $10.3 million USD annually, and its ability to draw revenue has been disappointing: daily visitors to the stadium currently total a few thousand, whereas shortly after the Olympics daily visitors numbered 50,000, and the small handful of commercial events hosted in the last year have failed to attract large crowds. "It is not an easy time for us...we are wracking our brains almost every day," said Zhou Bin, the Bird Nest's director of research and development. Despite its poor financial state the stadium remains a major attraction for visitors to Beijing and an icon of the city's development, and incidentally it is proudly featured in a major lesson in our curriculum -- check out more inside.

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