The venue master plan for the PyeongChang 2018 Games has been finalised, it was announced at the conclusion of the fourth project review visit (15-16 January 2015) of the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s Coordination Commission to the coastal city of Gangneung. While good progress has been made since the IOC’s last visit, the Chair of the IOC’s Commission, Gunilla Lindberg, also stressed that timelines remain tight, including ahead of test events starting in 2016.
Speaking after the meeting, Chair Lindberg said, “As we enter the delivery stage of the Games, some key priorities have been identified, and this has retained the full attention of President Cho, who is leading the organisational effort. Timelines in a number of areas remain tight, including for test events, so the PyeongChang Organising Committee (POCOG) and its partners must continue to accelerate their work and reorganisation in order to ensure the successful delivery of the venues and related services.” She continued, “The approval of the Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations by the IOC created the opportunity for the Korean organisers to propose hosting sports or disciplines outside the host city in order to maximise legacies and minimise costs where feasible. Since then, both POCOG and their Government partners have made it clear that they will maintain their current venue plan. As a result, the venue master plan is now finalised.”
At the opening of the meeting, Yang Ho Cho, the President of POCOG, said, “I feel great responsibility to ensure PyeongChang’s success. You have my assurances that I am fully committed to the Games through 2018.” He continued, “I ask everyone here today to contribute to our objective of successful Games.”
Day one of the two-day meeting included a visit to a number of the new venues being built for the Games, including the Gangneung Ice Arena, Gyeongpo Oval, Yulgok Hockey Centre, Kwandong Hockey Centre, Jeongseon Alpine Centre and the Alpensia Sliding Centre. This was followed by executive meetings, part of which was joined by Gangwon Province Governor Choi Moon-soon.
Governor Choi confirmed that, from the region’s side, everything was being put in place to deliver the Games successfully. He also emphasised that the delivery plans for the upcoming test events were settled, allowing preparations to move ahead at full speed.
This was followed on day two by progress reports on all key areas of the Games organisation. Some of the areas covered included athlete and National Olympic Committee services, sport, venues and infrastructure, marketing, accommodation, transport, technology, people management, test events and legacy.
The Project Review meetings are technical visits to the host city, which are attended by the Coordination Commission Chair and IOC staff, and serve as interim updates between full Coordination Commission visits. The next update to the IOC will be the Coordination Commission visit in March.