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Winter Olympics switch focus to building temporary facilities

Xin Wen
Updated: Nov 23,2021 09:00    China Daily

Construction work for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics has shifted to building temporary facilities after the completion of the main venues and supporting facilities for the Games, a senior city official said on Nov 22.

Ding Jianming, deputy director of the Beijing Major Projects Construction Headquarters Office, told a news conference in Beijing that by the end of last month, eight competition venues, 16 non-competition venues, and 31 pieces of supporting infrastructure in the Beijing and Yanqing competition zones had been put into use and delivered to the organizing committee for the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

The construction of temporary facilities, including athlete service system and rooms for television broadcasting, will be completed this year.

In preparation for the 2022 Winter Olympics, Beijing has established a green and low-carbon public transit network to allow spectators to reach various venues conveniently and quickly, he said.

All competition venues in Beijing will be able to be reached by subway by the end of this year, with its Subway Line 11 expected to open to the public in late December, Ding said, adding that the Beijing-Zhangjiakou High-speed Railway has shortened the travel time between the capital's downtown area and its Yanqing district to less than 40 minutes. A shuttle bus can take athletes and spectators directly to venues in the Yanqing competition zone in 30 minutes from the district railway station.

In addition, the Beijing and Yanqing competition zones have reconfigured 271.8 kilometers of reserved lanes on some roads in Beijing for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, with the lanes expected to be officially launched by the end of this year, said Li Gongke, chief engineer of the Beijing Municipal Transport Commission.

He said to be better equipped for the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games, barrier-free urban transit buses will account for 80 percent of all buses in Beijing by the end of this year.

The capital has also strengthened efforts to improve its capacity for handling emergencies and has formulated emergency rescue plans for the Olympics and Paralympics during their preparation period and during competition.

Liu Bin, deputy director of the Beijing Emergency Management Bureau, said it had established an emergency rescue command system for handling accidents and disasters in the capital.

"We strengthened the construction of rescue forces, enhanced reserves of rescue goods and materials, and consolidated on-duty preparations," he said.

Four types of urban public safety risk assessments for natural disasters and accidents have been rolled out to supervise districts and related departments in the implementation of risk assessments and controls, Liu said.

Analysis of disaster risks in the competition zones in Beijing and Yanqing, and in areas surrounding the Winter Olympic venues, will be carried out every month, he said.

Liu Wenhao, a construction team leader for the National Alpine Skiing Center, a competition venue in Yanqing district, said that to prepare for extreme weather conditions, he made detailed plans early with his co-workers to make sure facilities and projects such as ropeways, snow-making, and power supply equipment run smoothly in complex terrain.

"All of our work was sorted out thoroughly and implemented one by one, thanks to a concerted effort by the service and guarantee team in our city," he said.