Rio de Janeiro’s 2016 Olympic Organizing Committee has been confirmed having achieved “solid progress on the media villages, the venue masterplan and the recruitment of staff” by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Coordination Commission.
However, stating that “time remains of the essence,” the commission, according to an IOC press release also noted: “In the next three and a half years, both the Olympic Parks – in Deodoro and Barra – and many supporting infrastructures will need to be delivered. It is a task of great magnitude that lies ahead for the organizers.”
Commission chair and IOC Executive Board member Nawal El Moutawakel said, “Building work is ongoing and the Organizing Committee continues to strengthen its capacity. However, many projects will have to be delivered simultaneously. We remain confident but we must all stay vigilant and continue to work hard, so that timelines are respected.”
“The year ahead will be a critical one for Rio 2016, with work needed to begin at a number of sports venues in order to meet the deadlines for test events ahead of the Games,” says the IOC press release. “Such events are crucial in making sure that the Olympic Games run smoothly, as they allow athletes to get a feel for the field of play ahead of the Olympic Games, and for National Olympic Committees and International Federations to plan all their operations.”
The Commission spent three days examining preparations for the Rio project and receiving updates from the organizers and their partners on their plans. The Commission members also visited a number of Games-related projects, including the Maracaña Stadium, Rio 2016’s new headquarters, Deodoro, and the Rio port area. They were particularly pleased to see that the local Organizing Committee had taken on board many lessons from the London Games (both on site last summer and during the London Debrief in Rio last November) and has been busy adapting them to its own circumstances.
The continued strong support from the government was highlighted by the Commission following the start of regular meetings between the local Organizing Committee and all levels of government, which were led by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff. Aldo Rebelo, the Brazilian Minister of Sport; Sergio Cabral, the Governor of Rio de Janeiro; and Eduardo Paes, the Mayor of Rio de Janeiro, were also present during the meetings of the Commission.
The President of the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee, Carlos Arthur Nuzman, commented: “We have worked hard to increase integration across the project and the vital engagement and support of the three levels of government is stronger than ever. We are grateful for the expert advice and guidance received from the IOC Coordination Commission this week, and the Rio 2016 teams will continue to work relentlessly to deliver solutions for the outstanding issues and to respect the timelines involved in the project.”
The above article was first appeared in The Sport Intern, a blog published by Karl-Heinz Huba in Lorsch, Germany. This article is reprinted here with permission from the blog publisher. Mr. Huba can be reached via email at ISMG@aol.com.