Beijing Theatre Delay

Beijing’s US$324.6 million National Grand Theatre of China has been under construction since 2001. “The futuristic design of the theatre, by French architect Paul Andreu, features a titanium and glass dome set in the centre of an artificial lake. Andreu’s concept beat 68 other candidates in an international bidding process, but sparked criticism because it doesn’t complement the solemn atmosphere of Tian’anmen Square. But as the dewdrop-like design emerges ever more clearly with each passing day, old concerns about the look have been replaced by new worries about the theatre’s operation.” The theatres was to open in July, but the most optimistic opening is now predicted for late 2005.