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BEIJING - The Bird's Nest Olympic stadium in Beijing has hardly been used for sports events since the August Games, while just a corner of the Water Cube aquatic centre has become a public swimming pool.
One year on, white elephant syndrome lingers in China's capital as it ponders what to do with buildings that were intended to make a dramatic impression during two weeks in August last year.
"For China, the venues were about being the host of a key moment of global prestige that transcended economics," said Seth Grossman, managing director for Eastern China of Carat, a media communications agency.
But the venues are now taking up valuable Beijing real estate, triggering speculation about what to do with these monuments to the city's Olympic glory.
The 80000-seat Bird's Nest is crowded with sightseers every day, but an Italian Super Cup match on Saturday will be the first big sports event there since the Olympic flame was put out on August 24 last year.
It is not being used more frequently because Beijing officials want to reserve it for prestigious events. - Sapa-AFP