Olympians took centre stage on Monday, at the start of the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s second Coordination Commission visit to Beijing, as they updated the Commission on plans for some of the Beijing 2022 venues.
The tour kicked off with 2008 Olympic speed skating bronze medallist Beixing Wang showing off the location where the National Speed Skating Oval will be built. With construction already prepped to begin, the venue is slated to be completed in 2019. The Speed Skating Oval sits in the Olympic Forest Park next to the Beijing 2008 tennis facility.
Former Chinese national champion figure skater Jia Yao explained that, though it hosted Olympic volleyball action in 2008, the Wukesong Sports Centre will be repurposed to host short-track speed skating and figure skating competitions in 2022. The arena continues to experience action today, with events such as the recent World Women’s Curling Championships 2017 conducted there.
While the Wukesong Sports Centre was the site for thrilling basketball action in 2008, it has since been used for numerous ice hockey games. As such, it will welcome the ice hockey competitions at the Olympic Winter Games. But there will be no need to exclude basketball games from the arena in the coming years, as it can be transformed from a basketball court to an ice hockey rink in under six hours.