Tokyo 2020 organizers unveil village plaza made of reusable timber

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Tokyo, Jan 31 (IANS) The Tokyo 2020 organizing committee has unveiled a recreational complex for Olympic athletes that has been made mostly out of reusable wood with traditional Japanese construction techniques.

Spanning an area of 5,300 square meters (57,048 square feet) and built using 40,000 pieces of wood on one of the islands in Tokyo Bay, the Village Plaza will have cafes and shops as well as a media room and spaces for events related to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, reports Efe news agency.

This temporary construction is inspired by traditional Japanese architecture based on the assembly of wood slats. Once the Games get over, the timber slats will be dismantled and reused in other structures for public parks or schools, the organization explained during a media tour.

Tokyo 2020 venues sustainability manager Nariki Makihara said all the wood used in the plaza has been donated by 63 municipalities in Japan and would be returned to them for reuse after the Games.

In addition to 1,300 cubic meters of cypress and cedar wood, steel has also been used in the roof of the facility, which will be covered with bamboo to improve thermal insulation, while uncovered pipes — through which cold water will run — have been installed to cool the interior.

The plaza has been built at a cost of 2.4 billion yen ($22 million), a budget that has been adjusted as much as possible and with the idea that all the materials employed be reused, according to Makihara.

The complex is located in front of the Olympic Village where the athletes taking part in the Olympic and Paralympic Games will stay, and will only be accessible to them as well as members of the national delegations and accredited media.

The Olympic Village is currently in the final phase of construction and is scheduled to officially open on July 14, 10 days before the Games begin.

After the Games, the apartment blocks that make up the village will be put up for sale for residential use.

The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will take place between July 24 to August 9, while the Paralympics are to be held from August 25 to September 6.

–IANS

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