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Tokyo reviews cost, environmental impact of Olympic Games venues

Published on Jun 11, 2014 1:29 PM
This artist rendering released by Japan Sport Council shows the new National Stadium. -- PHOTO: JAPAN SPORT COUNCIL

TOKYO (AFP) - Tokyo is putting its planned venues for the 2020 Olympics under a microscope due to surging construction costs and environmental concerns, the megacity's top official said.

The estimated bill for 10 new sports facilities and the renovation of two existing buildings is now running at more than twice the original US$1.5 billion (S$1.87 billion) cost. The centrepiece of the Games - a new stadium - has also come under fire for its price tag and fears that its futuristic design would be an eyesore in one of the city's few greenbelts.

Mr Yoichi Masuzoe, governor of the sprawling metropolis, said officials would re-examine the venue building plan to help Tokyoites "better understand" the blueprint.

"We need to examine with realistic thinking what kind of legacy these plans would leave after the Olympics," he said in comments to the city's assembly on Tuesday which were later posted on its website. "And we have to take into account concerns over the surging costs of preparing for the Games, such as rising material and labour expenses.

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