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News Navigator: How have the 2020 Tokyo Olympic venues been changed?

A surfer is seen at Tsurigasaki in Ichinomiya, Chiba Prefecture, where surfing competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be held. (Mainichi file photo)

The Mainichi Shimbun answers common questions readers may have about 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic venues.

Question: How have the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic venues been changed from original plans?

Answer: All 42 venues for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were finalized after the proposed stadiums for soccer events were accepted at an International Olympic Committee (IOC) board meeting on May 2. The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government began to drastically review plans for the venues in June 2014 due to a substantial increase in expenses to host the games.

Tokyo was awarded the games after the organizing committee had pledged to hold a "compact Olympics" with venues close to the Olympic village in Tokyo's Chuo Ward. However, the organizing committee later decided to host events in wide areas of Tokyo, as well as in Hokkaido, Miyagi, Fukushima, Ibaraki, Saitama, Chiba, Kanagawa and Shizuoka prefectures.

Q: In concrete terms, how have the venues changed?

A: Venues for 11 events were changed -- the site for basketball was moved to Saitama Super Arena in Saitama; it was decided to hold wrestling, fencing and taekwondo at Makuhari Messe in Chiba; sailing will be competed off Enoshima in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture; while cycling was moved to the Izu Velodrome in Izu, Shizuoka Prefecture. The number of soccer venues increased to seven with the addition of Kashima Stadium in Kashima, Ibaraki Prefecture. Five new events will be introduced at the Tokyo Olympics, including surfing at Tsurigasaki in Ichinomiya, Chiba Prefecture, and baseball and softball, where some competition will be held in the Fukushima Prefectural Azuma Stadium in the city of Fukushima.

Q: What about for the Paralympics?

A: Paralympic competition will be held at 21 venues using the same sites as the Olympics. Makuhari Messe Halls A, B and C are all counted separately and Hall C will be used only for goalball. In total, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics will be held at 43 venues.

Q: Is it OK to make so many changes?

A: The Tokyo Organising Committee will save about 200 billion yen by using present facilities instead of building new venues. However, additional expenses are expected for transportation and security to hold the games in such a wide area. Organizers are trying to further reduce expenses.

(Answers by Kazuhiro Tahara, Sports News Department)

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