The pandemic-postponed 2020 Tokyo Olympic games are just a few days away and perhaps you’re thinking, “How will these venues be used post-event?”
Olympic venues the world over have faced different fates since the games’ inception in the late 1800s, and a stadium’s use, or non-use, after the world stage is gone has been a topic of controversy over the years. Cases have been made for creating a permanent location, but, due to myriad factors, no such action has yet been taken.
Many stadiums have been left to sit and decay, such as the Olympic venues in Rio de Janeiro, which hosted in 2016; Beijing, in 2008; and Athens, in 2004; others, such as that in Lake Placid, in New York’s Adirondack Mountains, and Munich Stadium, are being used to host more sporting events and meetings.
Beijing is scheduled to host the summer and winter games in 2022, and according to the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games, several existing venues, such as the city’s National Stadium and National Aquatics Centre, will be repurposed for the upcoming games.
This will be Tokyo’s second time as host city. It was the site of the 1964 Olympics. For this reason, many of its venues predate this year’s Olympics, and had been in frequent use prior to this year.
This goes for Los Angeles, as well, the city selected to host the 2028 Olympics. The city is already home to stadiums such as Staples Center, which may soon undergo renovations, and Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, where track and field events were staged at the 1984 Olympics and which completed renovations in 2019. SoFi Stadium, which was completed in 2020 as the new home of NFL’s Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers, is the newest stadium to be built in L.A. and is where the 2028 Olympics opening and closing ceremonies are scheduled to be held.
Of the 42 venues set to be used for Tokyo’s 2020 Olympics, eight are new and permanent, 24 have existed and 10 are temporary.
Olympic Stadium, one of the pre-existing venues, has been rebuilt and will host the opening and closing ceremonies, along with athletics events and football games. After the games are over, Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium will continue to be used for sporting and cultural events. As will Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, which already hosts many international and domestic events, such as table tennis and figure skating. Yoyogi National Stadium, famous for its suspension-roof design, is another facility that predates the 2020 Olympics and will continue to live on.