|From 2008 to 2022: Legacies from the Olympics|
BY wangxingwei from 21st Century|
Beijing will become the first city to host both Summer and Winter Olympics. Beijing 2022 can set a new benchmark for a sustainable Olympic Games, on the one hand benefiting from the legacy of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games and on the other developing a new winter sports destination in a sustainable way.
From Water Cube to Ice Cube
Beijing 2022 will use 26 competition and non-competition venues in three zones: downtown Beijing, the northwestern Yanqing district and co-host Zhangjiakou in North China's Hebei province, connected by a new high-speed railway to be completed by the end of 2019.
In the downtown zone, where all the ice-based sports will be held, 11 of 13 venues were used during the 2008 Summer Olympics.
The Water Cube, or the National Aquatic Center, a key legacy of the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics, will be turned into a competition arena for curling during the 2022 Games.
The National Aquatics Center will be repurposed from Water Cube to Ice Cube with a transferable rink. Renovations are expected to start at the Water Cube by the end of this year.
After the Olympics, the curling tracks will be preserved as an Olympic legacy and opened to the public.
From basketball to ice hockey
Ice hockey will be held in a converted arena in Wukesong that was used for the basketball competition in 2008.
As early as the initial construction of Wukesong Arena, the ice hockey competition has been listed as one of the arena's future development directions.
Ice pipes were embedded in the floor when the arena was constructed. During the basketball competition, the rink was covered by a thick ice carapace to insulate the cold, and new flooring was installed for basketball. The transition work can be finished in 8 hours.
The Wukesong Arena is not only used for basketball and ice hockey competitions, but also as a stadium for concerts.
No alternative Bird's Nest
The National Stadium is known as the Bird's Nest and will host the opening and closing ceremonies of Beijing 2022.
The reuse of ready-made facilities to optimize savings in venue operation is expected to significantly cut the cost for Beijing.
"There is absolutely no doubt about Beijing 2022 being cost-effective," said Christophe Dubi, the IOC's executive director for Olympic Games.
According to Beijing's candidature file submitted to the IOC in 2015, the combined infrastructure and operational budgets for the 2022 Games total about $3.5 billion - significantly less than the cost of staging a Summer Olympics.
(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Luo Sitian)