Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Tokyo Olympic Stadium Plans to Abandon Movable Electric Seating and Permanent Sub-Track

http://www.sanspo.com/sports/news/20150801/oly15080100090001-n1.html

translated and edited by Brett Larner

After withdrawing plans for the 2020 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games main stadium in Shinjuku, Tokyo due to criticism of the plans' massive costs, the government has revealed that it is eliminating one of the plan's key features, movable electric seating, from consideration for inclusion in revised plans.  Involved sources cited a reduction in construction costs as the reason.  The retractable roof covering the field will likewise be eliminated.

It was also announced that a permanent sub-track, used for track and field athletes to prepare and warm up for their events, would also not be included, making it clear that the conventional alternative of a temporary sub-track would be the firm policy for whatever future plan is selected for the stadium.  It is thus evident that the function of the New National Stadium under forthcoming plans will be greatly reduced from previous expectations.

Movable seating is useful in soccer and other sports, allowing spectators to sit closer to the field for a more enjoyable experience.  After the announcement that existing plans for the stadium would be scrapped, Japan Football Association president Kuniya Daini had contacted Japan Olympic Committee director Toshiaki Endo to request that movable seating be included in future plans.

With a sub-track a necessity for staging national and international-level track and field competitions the JAAF had likewise insisted on the inclusion of a permanent sub-track, but that direction was abandoned due to the difficulty of securing sufficient land in the area and other factors.

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