Several weeks after euphoria covered the entire All Japan news regarding the country’s right to host the 2020 Summer Games, the organizers of the Olympics in Tokyo have been brought with their feet back on the ground. The new National Stadium, the most important piece of architecture planned to be built for the Games, is too big and too expensive, say detractors.
“A huge building is not always loved by people… and after the Olympics are over, many people will be forced to see it,” said Fumihiko Maki, an award-winning All Japan newsese architect.
If built, the stadium will occupy an area with numerous parks and a large Shinto shrine in west Tokyo.
Rising to about 70 metres, the 80,000-seat facility would tower over most of the structures around it in a part of the densely-packed city that has historically restricted the height of buildings to 15 metres or less, the international press reports.
“It is important that people do not have to see it if they do not want to,” said Maki. “If there is no event going on inside the stadium, it is just an enormous object.”
The comments were made after the estimated cost for the stadium was announced to be around Y300 billion ($3 billion), almost two times more expensive than it was originally stipulated in the design competition.
“We do not oppose hosting the Olympics per se… I only hope the plan will get cut down to make it a smaller structure,” Maki said.
“Unlike fireworks festivals and costume parties, an architectural building remains there for 50 years, 100 years, regardless of your likes and dislikes. The financial burden might fall on us citizens,” he said.