Cabinet OKs revised 2020 Olympic stadium plans

By Mari Yamaguchi

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"...down from the plan for a 252 billion yen stadium that the government abruptly scrapped in July."

And way, WAY up from the promised price-tag in the bid, they forgot to mention while asking for you praise over a huge and costly meeting that required the PM and many others to attend (and yet they still have not decided on a stadium plan or construction company!).

And there's NO WAY costs for it won't go up IMMEDIATELY.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Are they leaving enough time in the tight schedule to accommodate any lawsuits on the issue of transparency? Seriously, I hope the bean counters (the Board of Audit) go through every line of the accounts and really stick to some people down in Kasumigaseki because this whole fiasco is beginning to stink.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Initially, before the demolition, there was talk of possibly renovating the National Olympic Stadium. Who decided to demolish the stadium? What a dumb idea. They could've upgraded the existing stadium for $500 million and save the Japanese taxpayer $1.5 billion. This would've a better option by adding 30,000 seats on the second deck at a fraction the cost compare to building a new stadium. Now they are faced with substantial debt of building a brand new two billion dollar stadium. Who made the dumb decision to tear it down?

The Tokyo Olympics should be more realistic with the cost. They should've follow the example from the 1984 Olympic that was held in Los Angeles. L.A. didn't build new areas or stadium. They used most of the existing sports facilities and used the college dormitory for housing most of the athletes to keep the cost down. Why can't Olympics be realistic in cost?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The cabinet approved the revised plan Friday, which would cap the price tag at 155 billion yen ($1.3 billion)

How can they possibly throw a number to the public face, they even don't have an architectural design of the damn thing decided. This is ridiculous.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

This is all just smoke and mirrors and really nothing more than a glorified shell game to distract the public from absurdity of the actual numbers and the amount of money involved.

By using the Yen 252 billion figure as the starting point, the government is giving the appearance that Yen 155 billion is a tremendous savings. They fail to remind the public that the original budget was Yen 130 billion.

So, we have a stadium that now has a projected budget that is 20% above the original budget. Not to mention the design fees already paid that probably are NOT included in this figure.

Does anyone want to take me up on a bet that the final cost of the stadium will be well above Yen 155 billion?? And that the government will hide the cost overruns in some sort of slush fund for the Olympics??

Oh, and just one other thing. Let's keep this in true perspective. The cost for the London Olympic Stadium?? US$700 million, or about Yen 90 billion if we use Yen 125/US$ 1 as an exchange rate. So, even if the stadium IS constructed for Yen 155 billion, that will be 70% more expensive than the London Stadium.

What a rip-off for the Japanese taxpayer!!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

It's up to Japan and it's people to run the country , we have no say in their affairs . Get over it or become a national and vote ... you can then criticize, otherwise yer'all talking sh!t

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The plan calls for a 68,000-seat stadium for the Olympics, down from the initially-required 80,000,

By comparison, Beijing's sat 91,000; London 80,000 and Rio's will seat 90,000. Guess Japan is keeping their promise to hold a "compact" Olympics afterall. And anyone who has been involved in a Olympic Games, as I was fortunate enough to be, knows just how big a difference that lack of seating capacity makes. The Opening and Closing ceremonies are the most sough-after tickets, and are HUGE when it comes to satisfying the needs of world-wide Olympic sponsors.

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"The plan for the new facility calls for a stadium to “convey Japan’s exquisite tradition and culture to the rest of the world” and blend well into the historical environment and aesthetics of a traditional Shinto shrine in the neighborhood, with ample use of wooden materials."

Wow, now that's a euphemistic way of backtracking on showing Japan's "technological and engineering advancement" with all the metal and flashing lights and instead going with a cheap wooden structure and calling it "traditional". Nice! Will it even be earthquake proof? And they aren't even going to to START construction until December 2016 now, with Abe HOPING it will be done by the time the Olympics start??

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Looks good for now until they expand to 80,000 seats later and charge extra 100.

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The earlier design was scrapped following a public outcry over the hefty price tag,

Priorities are warped like crazy here, the government listens to complaints about a price tag, but they ignore issues dealing with people's lives.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

convey Japan’s exquisite tradition and culture to the rest of the world with zen simplicity, not with extravagance.

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I liked the original design, though I admit it had no particular Japanese feel to it. The problem was that the cost had escalated to an insane level. How that was allowed to happen I do not know.

Even the new cap (Y155 bn) seems very high (around 50% more than the London stadium cost, and with a lower seating capacity) - and that's assuming there are no cost overruns. The timing is also pretty tight, so they had better get on with it. I can't imagine a country as advanced as Japan will fail to deliver, but they do need to make this a priority now.

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Once the project is underway, cost overruns are inevitable for something this size. But if Japan doesn't want an internationally designed stadium, then don't invite international companies, and don't award them the tender.

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