SBD/January 2, 2014/Olympics

Utah Keeps Olympic Venues Occupied, An Exception Among Former Hosts

Olympic experts said that it is "no small feat" that facilities from the '02 Salt Lake City Games are still in use, according to Alex Cabrero of the DESERET NEWS. Utah Olympic Legacy Federation CEO Colin Hilton said, "In the mid-'90s, there was all of three ice rinks in all of Utah. There are 17 today." Hilton added that every single '02 venue in Utah "is still used." The Utah Olympic Oval in Kearns "still gets a lot of use today -- from public skating to Olympic training" -- and is the HQs for U.S. Speedskating. The facility also is "hosting the U.S. Speedskating Olympic Trials this week." The ski jumps and the Nordic Combined Track in Park City "hosted U.S. Olympic trials this past weekend." Hilton attributes the facilities' sustained use "to a long-term plan ... that was put in place before they were built." More than 45 World Cups or championships "have been hosted in Utah" since '02. London has a "similar plan to use its Olympic venues built for the 2012 Summer Games, but it remains to be seen how successful it will be." Among facilities built for the '08 Beijing Games, "only the Water Cube ... gets regular use after being turned into a water park" (DESERET NEWS, 12/31).
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