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Tokyo 2020 finalises Live Sites, triathlon hit by water contamination

The organising committee for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games has today (Monday) finalised its selection of 30 ‘Live Site’ venues by adding one more destination to the previously announced list.

The Live Sites will act as fan parks for next year’s Games and Tokyo 2020 last month detailed 29 venues in a bid to ensure the whole of Japan is engaged in the event. In Tokyo itself, there will be 11 Live Sites.

The addition to the existing list of Live Site venues is in Hamamatsu city, Shizuoka prefecture.

Kanagawa prefecture and Yokohama city are scheduled to stage two apiece, while Sapporo, Fukushima, Ibaraki, Saitama, Saitama, Asaka, Sayama, Chiba, Fujisawa, Yamanakakomura, Izunokuni, Ito, Gotenba, Susono and Shizuoka will have one each.

All Live Sites are located in areas hosting Tokyo 2020 competitive events or in the Tohoku and Kumamoto regions, which were hit by natural disasters in 2011 and 2016, respectively.

Operated in conjunction with the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and various other organisations, the Live Sites will be set up and decorated to reflect the atmosphere of the Games. Fans will be able to view live broadcasts of Tokyo 2020 events on giant screens.

The Live Sites will also feature stage events, as well as provide visitors with an opportunity to try out Olympic and Paralympic sports.

Tokyo 2020 further developed its fan engagement policy last month by revealing details of the concepts behind Tokyo Waterfront City, an area around Tokyo Bay that will host Olympic and Paralympic events and activities in the summer of 2020.

The new initiative will aim to create an environment that will more directly engage spectators and visitors during the Games, creating a new approach to hosting events and a new experience for fans. Waterfront City includes the Aomi and Daiba neighbourhoods as well as the new city area of Ariake, where a number of urban development projects are underway.

Events for many of the urban and youth-focused sports that will feature at the Olympics for the first time at Tokyo 2020 – such as 3×3 basketball, BMX freestyle, skateboarding, and sport climbing – will be held there.

Elsewhere, Tokyo 2020 has said it will conduct a comprehensive review after high levels of bacteria forced the swimming part of a triathlon test event for the Paralympics to be cancelled on Saturday.

The International Triathlon Union (ITU) said the water at the Odaiba venue in Tokyo Bay recorded E-coli levels that were more than two times over its limits. The water was found to be at Level 4, the ITU’s highest risk level.

Water quality levels also plagued the buildup to the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. In response, Tokyo 2020 told the Associated Press that a comprehensive review would be conducted with the ITU.

Tokyo 2020 said a triple-layer underwater screen would be installed for the Olympics, replacing a single-layer. “Based on the results of multiple research in the past, we believe that the multiple layer screen will assure the successful delivery of the competitions,” the organising committee added.

The latest news comes after it was reported last week that lawmakers from Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) will carry out a study on how heatstroke can be prevented during the Games amid stifling temperatures in Tokyo.