Construction of New Aquatic Center is the Key Project for 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Paralympics

By Hideki Mochizuki, Swimming World Japanese correspondent

TOKYO, Japan, September 20. SINCE Tokyo was announced at the host city of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, a positive economic impact has already kicked in. Real estate prices around the area where the Athletes Village is scheduled to be built has already gone up significantly, and people are expecting this trend to continue throughout the next seven years.

Along with the Athletes Village, the new Olympic Aquatic Center is the key project for the City of Tokyo with the competition pool being constructed just a few miles away from the Athletes Village. Competitive Swimming, Synchronized Swimming and Diving will all be held in the new aquatics center, with a temporary pool, holding 6,500 seats, being built to house the Water Polo competition.

The main aquatic center is being built to hold 20,000 spectators, with plans to scale back the amount of seats to 5,000 at the end of the Games.

As we previously reported, the current budget for the construction of these two pools is set at 39.7 billion Yen ($397 million USD), and is planned to be paid solely by the City of Tokyo. Tokyo is still undecided as what to do with the current Tatsumi International Aquatic Center after the Games, as the city does not need a pair of big competition pools standing next to each other.

Tatsumi was unable to be used for the 2020 Olympic Games bid, because it stands next to a canal, which precluded Tokyo from expanding its seating capacity past its current 3,600 seats. During the Olympics, Tatsumi will be used as a training pool for athletes, but is likely destined to be dismantled after the Olympics and Paralympics.