Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games: Update on preparations   近代オリンピック

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The new Kasumigaoka stadium

Tokyo 2020 Oympics map

Faster, Higher, Stronger!

We're 5 years away from the Tokyo Olympics! Here's a brief update on the project, the upcoming work and expected changes coming to the Japanese capital.

There are only five years left to prepare Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics, so there isn't a moment to lose for the Tokyo 2020 committee.

The Japanese project stands out because of its cost reduction: a large number of sports facilities already exist, and will be reused. The symbol of this project is the new National Stadium Kasumigaoka, a  futuristic design built on the site of the former stadium, and designed by architect Zaha Hadid.

The Olympic Village will be located on the Harumi Wharf, an artificial island located between Ginza and Odaiba. Almost all installations are expected to be within a radius of 8km around the village. All the facilities will be environmentally friendly, using renewable energy.

The project is beautiful, ecofriendly, and less expensive compared to previous Olympics, but in reality, what changes should visitors expect?

It's in transport in Tokyo that the most significant problems will arise. Many of the aging subway stations will be refurbished, with upgrade works staggered throughout the next five years.

Shibuya Station is already in full redevelopment, while others will follow from the end of 2015.

As is the case for all future Olympic cities, Tokyo will also undergo a major cleaning operation, not just of its monuments but also of its neighborhoods. Gradually, as the games draw nearer we have to also expect price increases in hotels and restaurants.

But there are plenty of benefits to be expected - not just better services, more officers and hotel staff should speak more English, and signage and markers will be much clearer and more widespread than today, further reducing the risk of getting lost.

Both eagerly awaited and somewhat feared, the Tokyo Olympic Games will certainly profoundly change the landscape of the capital of Japan. You might need to visit twice, to compare the before and after...

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