Gold dreams, card­board beds for Olympians

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - NATION & WORLD - By Stephen Wade

TOKYO — Tokyo Olympic ath­letes be­ware — par­tic­u­larly larger ones.

The bed frames in the Ath­letes Vil­lage at this year’s Olympics will be made of card­board. Sturdy card­board.

“Those beds can stand up to 200 kilo­grams,” ex­plained Takashi Ki­ta­jima, the gen­eral man­ager of the Ath­letes Vil­lage, speak­ing through an in­ter­preter.

That’s about 440 pounds.

“They are stronger than wooden beds,” Ki­ta­jima added.

He also took into ac­count the pos­si­bil­ity of a wild room cel­e­bra­tion af­ter, say, a gold-medal vic­tory.

“Of course, wood and card­board would each break if you jumped on them,” he said.

The sin­gle bed frames will be re­cy­cled into pa­per prod­ucts af­ter the games. The mat­tress com­po­nents, which are not made of card­board, will be re­cy­cled into plas­tic prod­ucts.

The mat­tress is bro­ken up into three dis­tinct sec­tions, and the firm­ness of each can be ad­justed.

The idea was to use ma­te­ri­als that could be re­made af­ter the Olympics and Par­a­lympics. But the card­board frames and sup­ports should give the rooms a Spar­tan look.

Or­ga­niz­ers showed off the beds and a few other fur­nish­ings Thurs­day at their head­quar­ters.

The en­tire Ath­letes Vil­lage com­plex will be com­pleted in June.

The Olympics open on July 24 fol­lowed by the Par­a­lympics on Aug. 25.

“The or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee was think­ing about re­cy­clable items, and the bed was one of the ideas,” Ki­ta­jima ex­plained.

Or­ga­niz­ers say this is the first time that the beds and bed­ding in the Ath­letes Vil­lage have been made of re­new­able ma­te­ri­als.

The Ath­letes Vil­lage be­ing built along­side Tokyo Bay will com­prise 18,000 beds and be com­posed of 21 apart­ment tow­ers.

JAE C. HONG/AP

Or­ga­niz­ers showed the card­board beds and other fur­nish­ings that will be in ath­letes’ rooms for the Tokyo Olympics.

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