Tokyo residents protest $1.7b freaky-looking Olympic stadium

This isn’t quite the global uprising against sports mega-events that I was wondering about, but the first major protests have hit Tokyo over planning for the 2020 Summer Olympics:

About 500 protesters took part in the demonstration while carrying signs that read “We want a compact and economical Olympics” and “Reverse the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.”

“The proposed stadium is too big,” said Kazuhisa Oriyama, one of the organizers of Saturday’s protest. “The organizers of the games need to reconsider their plans and make the public part of decision-making process.”

The new Olympic stadium, which is set to replace Tokyo’s existing 56-year-old National Stadium, would seat 80,000 people, have four times the floor space of the old stadium, cost $1.7 billion to build (down from an initially planned $3 billion), and look like yikes:

If Japan does not replace this design with one that looks less like a mammoth futuristic bicycle helmet, protestors will almost certainly continue to lock arms around the stadium and hold balloons.


6 comments on “Tokyo residents protest $1.7b freaky-looking Olympic stadium

  1. I knew I had seen that shape before (besides the bicycle helmet part):
    http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/databases/olympians/001064-119.01-e.php?&photo_id_nbr=4079&&PHPSESSID=kkbfqlrg592s5c5poq8u6ipgh1

    It’s just scaled-up over the Montreal version.

    Maybe they will try to scale-up Montreal Olympic Stadium next. There’s no way that could fail…

  2. Link works, shows a model of the Big Owe in Montreal, without the support spire/observatory.

  3. Weird, it didn’t work for me (or someone else I asked) before. Must have been a transient error.

    Anyway: Hey, I think I’ve walked by that thing. (Which is now a nature museum, not Olympic Stadium but next to it.) I don’t remember it as being as freaky-looking from the ground, but then, sitting next to the Big O tower, just about anything would look normal by comparison.

  4. Right. That was the Velodrome where bicycling events were held. I remember walking around it and it is a strange design but, I believe, all concrete supports as is Olympic Stadium’s supports. Looks like the Japanese architecture firm has tried to update the design to include some actual steel. It’s always good to have an architect that isn’t trying to prove something to the world while spending someone else’s money.

    Speaking of the Olympic Stadium architect, somehow I missed this,
    http://www.sunnewsnetwork.ca/sunnews/canada/archives/2013/05/20130517-123606.html

  5. It looks like an alien spaceship that landed in Tokyo. I wonder if the aliens will bring some free stadium cash with them?

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