Japan Olympic Committee President Tsunekazu Takeda said they are still pushing through with the original plans for the futuristic-looking new Tokyo Stadium that will be built as the centrepiece of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. This is after issues about the size and cost of the stadium came out from prominent architects and also residents who will be affected by the construction.
Takeda told the International Olympic Committee during their two-day orientation seminar that their previous announcement that they will be scaling down does not mean they will be building a smaller facility. He said they are aware of the criticisms and concerns, but emphasised that “nothing has been decided yet and we still plan to have an 80,000-seat stadium.” The original cost for the new stadium, designed by British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, was at $3 billion but after the issues were raised, the government said they are bringing it down to $1.3 billion. However, they have not shared yet the specifics on what will be trimmed down except to say that the original design will still be kept, including the retractable roof.
During the orientation seminar, the IOC delegation led by executive director Gilbert Felli shared with the Tokyo team what their thoughts and best practices are on managing both the Olympics and Paralympics. Felli said this seminar has allowed them to “lay the foundation for the future” and add to the knowledge for Tokyo to be able to stage their second Olympics. The new IOC president Thomas Bach and vice president John Coates will be visiting Tokyo next Wednesday. The 2020 host city will be forming its own organising committee by February and some have already linked former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori as the one to be named as committee head.
[via The Republic]