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SBD Global/June 10, 2013/Facilities

Rio De Janeiro's Olympic Stadium To Stay Closed Until '15 While The Roof Is Repaired

Rio's Joao Havelange Stadium will host the track & field events during the 2016 Games.
A committee of engineers said that Rio de Janeiro's Joao Havelange stadium, scheduled to host the athletics at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games, "is to stay shut for 18 months while the roof is repaired," according to Brian Homewood of REUTERS. The stadium, completed six years ago, "was closed in March because of structural damage to the roof in a major embarrassment for Brazilian sporting authorities." The city government said that "the roof could present a risk for spectators if the wind reached over 63 kilometers per hour." Rio de Janeiro's Catholic University Engineering Professor Sebastiao Andrade said, "It is a flaw which is related to the way the project was conceived" (REUTERS, 6/7). The BBC reported a committee of engineers said that "it had found a number of problems, including broken and twisted supports." Engineers concluded in a report that "the project for the construction of the stadium had presented 'structural errors' from the start." City official Alexandre Pinto, who is in charge of public constructions, admitted there had been "several mistakes in this project." He said, "To close a stadium so soon after it was opened is a tragedy, is a shame" (BBC, 6/7).

KEEPING CONFIDENT: The AAP reported local Olympic organizers said that "they remained confident the city would deliver the stadium in time for the test events planned for the 2016 Games." The committee said, "The Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Organising Committee is satisfied that the solution presented by the city of Rio de Janeiro will allow the Olympic Stadium to be ready for the Games which will happen more than three years from now" (AAP, 6/8).
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