Following its eighth visit to Tokyo (21-23 May), the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s Coordination Commission left Japan impressed by the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee’s state of preparation, as well as with the spectacular interest in these Olympic Games.
“With just over a year to go, excitement in these Olympic Games is unparallelled. While we were in Tokyo, ticket ID registrations surpassed the five million mark,” said IOC Coordination Commission Chair John Coates. “The foundation to host successful Olympic and Paralympic Games is set. The Coordination Commission witnessed first-hand the steady progress in construction at several venues, including the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, Kasai Canoe Slalom Centre and the Olympic Village. The members of the Commission also visited the Yumenoshima Park Archery Field, which opened in April. We were pleased to hear about the concrete measures to manage transport, as well as advances in planning for adverse weather.”
“Now is the time for Tokyo 2020 not only to test these operational plans, but also to home in on creating the most spectacular atmosphere possible for athletes and spectators. With this high level of preparation, Tokyo 2020 has the opportunity to make these Games truly special.”
A succession of milestones will be reached in the coming weeks and months that provide opportunities to engage both domestic and global audiences even further. The first wave of test events will kick off in June, followed by the One-Year-To-Go celebrations, as well as additional phases of ticketing, including international sales.
A number of sports experiences will be held throughout Japan over the next year via the “Tokyo Lets GoGo” programme, encouraging people to learn about and try a number of sports that will feature at the Olympic Games.
During the three days of meetings, Tokyo 2020 also presented on how it will make the Olympic Games unforgettable, with concepts such as taking sport out of the stadium and into the street, moving from a passive to an active fan experience at the urban cluster. The Organising Committee is also refining its plans for live sites at Games time, which will include public viewing and cultural performances.
The IOC delegation also addressed matters that International Federations (IFs) raised at the recent SportAccord Convention with the Organising Committee. Strong commitments have been made to address the recommendations with regard to sport presentation, the Look of the Games and service levels for IFs.
“With a little more than just one year to go until the opening of the Games, discussions are becoming more and more specific,” said Tokyo 2020 President Mori. “With regard to event management, measures to address heat and extreme weather continue to be key issues. This morning, we held a table-top training exercise based on a scenario where the competition schedule had been changed due to excessive heat and the impact of a passing typhoon.
There were also lively debates about the urban sports and surfing festivals that are likely to be characteristics of the Tokyo 2020 Games. We need to ensure that these are successful so they can provide a model for future Olympic Games. We will continue to work closely with all the stakeholders as an ‘all-Japan’ team.”
Several stakeholders of the Olympic and Paralympic movements also joined the Coordination Commission visit, offering their expertise to ensure that athletes, fans and stakeholders all enjoy memorable Olympic Games.
This included National Olympic Committees (NOCs) – the British Olympic Association, New Zealand Olympic Committee and United States Olympic Committee – and TOP partner representatives – Intel, Panasonic, Toyota and Visa. In addition, representatives from all of the Japanese Olympic and Paralympic national federations were also present, demonstrating that these Games are for the whole country.
IOC releases Evaluation Commission 2026 report
One month ahead of the host city election, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) today released the report by the Evaluation Commission 2026. It provides a thorough assessment of the two candidates, Stockholm-Åre and Milan-Cortina*, following the working visits on 12-16 March and 2-6 April respectively, and analyses of the candidature files and additional documentation submitted. It will serve as a guide for the IOC Members before they vote on 24 June at the 134th IOC Session in Lausanne.
The Chair of the Evaluation Commission, Octavian Morariu, said: “Both projects prioritise legacy and sustainability by capitalising on winter sports tradition and experience, with first-rate, established World Cup venues, knowledgeable and passionate fans, volunteers and event organisers. They have fully embedded the Olympic Agenda 2020 philosophy, and have athletes at the centre of their plans.”
He added: “The two candidates have aligned their concepts with their context and local long-term goals. All of this led to massive cost savings and a more sustainable hosting model that is the new reality for the Games.”
The Candidate Cities 2026 plan to use on average over 80 per cent existing or temporary venues, compared to 60 per cent for the 2018 and 2022 Candidates.
As a consequence, their proposed Games operating budgets are on average 20 per cent lower than those of the Candidate Cities for the Olympic Winter Games 2018 and 2022.
The Candidature Process 2026 has been built on greater partnership, flexibility and sharing of knowledge. Featuring a new one-year non-committal Dialogue Stage, the IOC, supported by the International Olympic Winter Sports Federations, worked hand-in-hand with Interested Cities and National Olympic Committees (NOCs) to help them explore options and develop Games projects.
As part of the new process, the IOC provided increased technical services to each Interested City, while lowering the number of Candidate City deliverables and presentations. More than 20 Olympic Games experts supported the Cities in the development of their Games concepts, through the provision of over 30 on-site individual services, including several workshops.
The result is a significant cost reduction in the candidature budgets, which are projected to be over 75 per cent lower than the average budgets for the 2018 and 2022 Candidates.
The Candidate Cities 2026 have publicly expressed their appreciation for the new reforms, and cited them as a major factor in their decision to apply to host the Games.
The Cities have the right of response to the report. Any additional information received by the Evaluation Commission will be shared with the IOC Members ahead of the election.
On 24 June, the IOC membership will have the opportunity to hear from the Commission and the Candidate Cities, which will include detailed question-and-answer sessions during a technical briefing in the morning. In the afternoon, the Candidate Cities will make a final presentation during the 134th IOC Session, before the vote and the host city announcement.