Tokyo starts construction of main Olympic sta­dium

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -


Construction of the main sta­dium for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics of­fi­cially started yes­ter­day, more than a year af­ter the orig­i­nal blue­prints were torn up fol­low­ing pub­lic out­cry over sky­rock­et­ing costs. The sta­dium is due to be com­pleted by the end of Novem­ber 2019, five months be­hind sched­ule. “I be­lieve, af­ter four years, many ath­letes will chal­lenge their phys­i­cal lim­its at this sta­dium and em­power spec­ta­tors and the so­ci­ety,” Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe said at a cer­e­mony to mark the start of build­ing work. Ja­pan ap­proved the new sta­dium plans in Septem­ber af­ter Abe scrapped the ini­tial de­sign by the late IraqiBri­tish ar­chi­tect Zaha Ha­did as costs soared beyond $2 bil­lion. The 149 bil­lion yen ($1.29 bil­lion) price tag for ar­chi­tect Kengo Kuma’s pro­posal comes in just un­der the cap for the con­trac­tors, led by construction gi­ant Tai­sei Corp. The new venue is be­ing built on the site of the for­mer na­tional sta­dium which was used for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. Con­cerns that bal­loon­ing costs could hit a stag­ger­ing $30 bil­lion-four times the ini­tial es­ti­mate and al­most triple that of the 2012 Lon­don Olympics — have forced or­gan­is­ers to re­think plans for sev­eral venues.—

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