Tokyo Olympic ‘bicycle helmet’ stadium scrapped

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The planned Tokyo 2020 Olympic Stadium must be revised after its predicted cost had almost doubled to more than $2 billion, a reported record for a sports stadium.

“We are scrapping our plans for the stadium, and starting from zero,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said, according to Reuters.

The planned stadium had been criticized for its cost and its design — like a bicycle helmet — since shortly after Tokyo beat Madrid and Istanbul in an International Olympic Committee vote to host the 2020 Olympics on Sept. 7, 2013.

Projected costs had at one point been up to a reported $3 billion, though it had later been planned to be cut in size by 25 percent before it was scrapped altogether.

The most expensive sports stadium in history is the New York Giants and New York Jets’ MetLife Stadium, which cost $1.6 billion, according to The Associated Press.

“We take note of the decision by Prime Minister Abe to review the design plan and to look for a feasible solution that will offer a state of the art stadium with top level conditions for athletes and spectators,” IOC vice president John Coates said in a statement, according to the AP. “We understand that the review of the stadium will not affect its delivery for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, and we will work with the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee to ensure that what is needed for the games is delivered in the revised plan.”

A competition for a new stadium design would be held within the next six months with plans to finish the stadium by spring 2020, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cited Japan’s sports minister.

The new stadium would then not be ready for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.

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