It was conceived in 1927 with the original name of the stadio dei Cipressi by the architect Enrico del Debbio, and in 1937 it was revived by Luigi Moretti and used as a scenic backdrop of the fascist period games. In 1949 CONI (its owner) decided its completion by Annibale Vitellozzi, who completed it in 1953; known at that time as stadio dei Centomila, because of the capacity that was around 100,000 seater, then the stadium was renamed after the assignment of the XVII Olympiad games to Rome.
In 1990, on the occasion of the football World Cup, the stadium incurred in a total renovation to which attended several prominent personalities of engineering and architecture, including the original designer Vitellozzi. The stadium was destroyed and rebuilt in reinforced concrete, and the entire system was fully covered with a white marquee fiberglass. After the restructuring, the stadium went from a capacity of 90,000 to 82,922 spectators, further reduced recently to 72,698 total posts. The record price category was on June 6, 1998 on the occasion of the Claudio Baglioni concert. In 2007 it started an extensive makeover plan for the interior of the stadium, to conform to UEFA standards in view of the Champions League Final, held on May 27, 2009.
The work, completed in 2008, have provided for the retrofitting structures (also with further improvements in safety) the adaptation of the locker room and the press room, the complete replacement of the seats, the installation of new high-definition digital screens, the retreat of the benches, the partial removal of Plexiglas barriers between the stands and the playing field and a reduction of the posts to the total capacity of 73,261 seats. In order to increase the comfort of the spectators, a part of modernization works of the stadium concerned the increase in dining options and the adjustment of the toilets. This has allowed the Olimpico Stadium of Rome to enter in the four category (Elite) of European stadiums.