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In a recent statement, the Mayor of Yokohama, Fumiko Hayashi, confirmed, “I am pleased to welcome Stadia & Arena Asia Pacific 2016 to Yokohama.” She continued:

Our city is home to YOKOHAMA ARENA, our venue for this event, has a capacity of approximately 17,000 and boasts a moveable seating system, enabling its use for a wide range of sports competitions and events. Numerous hosts have praised this venue for its well-equipped facilities, and it is utilized for events an impressive 300 days out of the year.

Furthermore, Yokohama has a high-speed Shinkansen (bullet train) station, providing excellent transport connections to other cities within Japan, and the city’s beautiful harbor-front district scenery, world cuisine and other attractions offer plenty to do after event sessions.

By hosting Stadia & Arena Asia Pacific 2016, we hope to provide opportunities for its many participants to hold fruitful discussions and lively exchanges.

Fumiko Hayashi
Mayor of Yokohama

 

The 18th edition of our ‘live’ event, Stadia & Arena Asia Pacific, will be held at the Yokohama Arena, September 26-28, 2016. For further details, go to: www.saevents.uk.com

Japan Sport Council unveils modified National Stadium designs

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The Japan Sport Council has unveiled images of Zaha Hadid Architect’s re-designed National Stadium, which the architects say will “make the stadium even more efficient, user-focused, adaptable and sustainable.”

The modified design for the centrepiece of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics sees the stadium’s capacity remain at 80,000-seats. ZHA admitted they modified their designs following sustained protest from Japanese architects and citizens alike, and repeated criticism including a petition launched by Pritzker laureates, Toyo Ito and Fumihiko Maki. The Japanese Government had earlier announced plans to reduce the cost from its original budget of $3bn to $1.7bn.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has said it would support a scaled-back plan for the entire event. Speaking after the IOC Coordination Commission’s first visit to Tokyo, Committee Vice President, John Coates, said:

We want to see more existing venues, we want to see the use of more temporary grandstands. It may be that there are new venues and existing venues which are currently dedicated for just one sport, where with good programming you could do two.

A key part of Tokyo’s successful bid was the city’s pledge to deliver a more ‘compact’ Games, with 28 of the 33 competition locations situated within five miles of the Athletes’ Village. However, Tokyo’s organising committee has now informed the IOC it intends to re-visit these plans amid concerns over rising costs, with local media reports suggesting locations in the Greater Tokyo area, such as Saitama (an hour away from the city centre) may be used.

Masuzoe appears to be at ease with these potential changes, stating the city’s highly efficient public transportation would make it difficult to justify billing the taxpayer for excessive costs incurred by the compact Games model.

According to the Associated Press (AP), Masuzoe said:

Even if a venue is 100km away, you can still achieve a maximum travel time of 30 minutes if the transportation system if appropriate. Expenses can be 30, 40, 50 times more than the original plan. How can I persuade the taxpayers to pay this kind of money? We are working with the IOC and the various sports federations to make the Games sustainable. Legacy is very important. If you abolish everything after the Games who can accept that?

Masuzoe’s comments come after the IOC urged Tokyo 2020 to avoid unnecessary construction in its preparations for the Olympic Games, welcoming talk of adjusting venue plans.

Istanbul offers unrivalled athlete experience as 2020 decision approaches

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The delegations from Istanbul, Madrid and Tokyo are now gathered in Buenos Aires to receive the decision of the IOC on 7 September.

Istanbul 2020 has promised athletes an unrivalled Olympic and Paralympic Games experience that places them at the centre of its iconic hosting concept. Istanbul 2020’s plans also offer athletes reserved seats in the stands at the Opening Ceremony so, for the first time in Olympic history, they can play a full part as the stars of the show and as spectators.

Speaking at a press briefing for the international media in Buenos Aires, Professor Uğur Erdener, IOC member and President of the Turkish NOC, said:

Right from the planning stage, Istanbul 2020 has sought to weave the city’s natural and architectural beauty into its hosting concept at all 37 Games venues. If Istanbul 2020 wins the right to host the Games in 2020, athletes will truly feel part of the city they are competing in, and part of an historic Olympic and Paralympic Games. I have no doubt this will inspire them to achieve the greatest athletic feats. Imagine being a marathon runner crossing continents over the Bosphorus Bridge, a triathlete racing alongside Istanbul’s 2,500 year-old city walls or a volleyball player spiking for the match with the Bosphorus at your back.

Istanbul has hosted more than 40 major sporting events over the past seven years and the response we have had from athletes is always the same: ‘we would love to compete in a Games here.’ Istanbul has that magic athletes thrive on and they will be at the centre of the greatest stage in 2020.

Istanbul 2020’s inspirational offering to athletes is reinforced by the most comprehensive support solution for athletes, NOCs and NPCs. Istanbul 2020 will have an Olympic Training Precinct and a free-to-use Athlete Recovery Centre available for all athletes within walking distance of the Olympic Village — an Olympic first.

Gizem Girişmen, who won Paralympic gold in archery at Beijing 2008, said:

We have a robust plan because we have listened to NOCs. We have addressed their concerns raised from previous Games and we will deliver the most comprehensive NOC solution and support package. Athletes spend around 80 per cent of their time in the Olympic Village or at training venues, so we have focused on placing facilities on their doorstep. Training venues for 22 sports will be within 15 minutes of the Athletes’ Village. The average journey time from Village to competition venues will be just 16 minutes.

Çağla Büyükakçay, Turkey’s number one female tennis player, said:

Istanbul 2020 will give athletes everything they need to compete at the highest possible level. With access to such great facilities in close proximity, athletes will be able to focus on doing what they do best. The welfare and performance of all sportsmen and women – whatever flag they are competing under – has been at the centre of all Istanbul 2020 planning from day one.