Friday, July 17, 2015

Prime Minister Abe Announces Revision of Olympic Stadium Plans A Day After Pushing Through Military Expansion Bill

Late last week and earlier this week there was a sudden swell in popular opposition to the Zaha Hadid-designed 2020 Tokyo Olympic stadium design after it was revealed that the design would cost over $2 billion USD, far above the original estimate in Tokyo's Olympic bid.  Polls estimated from 71% to 95% opposition.  Prime Minister Shinzo Abe indicated that there was little choice as "there wouldn't be enough time" to redo plans for the stadium.

With the stadium's price tag dominating the headlines, virtually simultaneously on Thursday the main house of the Japanese parliament approved bills fronted by Abe aimed at expanding the role of the Japanese military despite large-scale public opposition and legal challenges over the move's constitutionality.

The next day Abe backtracked on his longstanding support for the Olympic Stadium plans, calling for a complete restart of the design process but giving assurances that the stadium would "definitely" be completed in time for the Olympics.

The timing was no doubt entirely coincidental.

1 comment:

Scott Brown said...

Don't be paranoid Brett. Some times a distraction is merely a distraction.;)