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Olympics: Main stadium for Tokyo 2020 reaches 90% completion

  • July 3, 2019
  • , Kyodo News , 3:30 p.m.
  • English Press

TOKYO — Journalists got a first-hand look at the nearly-completed main stadium for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, during a media tour of the site on Wednesday.


The Japan Sport Council, who are overseeing the building of the New National Stadium, said an inauguration event featuring athletes and artistic performers that the general public can attend will be held on Dec. 21.


A completion ceremony is scheduled for mid-December.


The exterior of the 150 billion yen (about $1.3 billion) multi-purpose stadium designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma is nearly finished, the laying of grass is scheduled for mid-July, and the running track will be installed in August and September.


“We hope to keep up the good work for the remaining five months and do a thorough job,” a JSC official said.


Construction of the stadium — which will host the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics and Paralympics, as well as the Olympic women’s soccer final — commenced in December 2016.


Of the 60,000 permanent seats that will be installed, 45,000 are in place. After the games, capacity will be expanded to 68,000.


A total of 185 fans and a misting system in eight areas will reduce heat and cool the stadium, while organizers continue to explore options to combat the extreme summer heat that could pose a health risk to athletes, spectators and workers.


High-definition mega-screens have been placed in the northern and southern areas. Wood from all of Japan’s 47 prefectures was used to craft the eaves of the stadium’s distinctive roof.


The first sporting event to be held in the venue will be the Emperor’s Cup soccer final on Jan. 1.


The 2020 Summer Olympics will take place between July 24 and Aug. 9, followed by the Paralympics from Aug. 25 to Sept. 6.

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