November 19, 2019 / 5:58 AM / 24 days ago

Olympics: Tokyo finishes building stadium for 2020

FILE PHOTO: Olympic rings are displayed in front of the construction site of the New National Stadium, the main stadium of Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, during a media opportunity in Tokyo, Japan July 3, 2019. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - Construction work has been completed at Tokyo’s National Stadium, set to be the centrepiece of next year’s Olympic Games, the site’s owners said on Tuesday.

The Japan Sports Council said the final work had been completed on Thursday with just the final quality and safety checks remaining before the stadium opens next month.

It will be officially unveiled on Dec. 21, with the Emperor’s Cup soccer final being the first sporting event to be held there on New Year’s Day.

Completed at a cost of more than $1.25 billion, the stadium, which can accommodate 60,000, will also host the athletics and soccer events during the Games.

Construction started in December 2016, about 14 months later than planned, after the original design was scrapped because of a public outcry over spiraling costs.

The delay meant the stadium could not host matches of the Rugby World Cup, as originally planned.

The National Stadium is one of eight new venues to be used at the Tokyo Games, all of them are either complete or on schedule to be finished before the event.

The Tokyo Olympics run from July 24 to Aug. 9.

Reporting by Jack Tarrant; Additional reporting by Kwiyeon Ha; Editing by Clarence Fernandez

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