QNOC to invest $455 million in Asian Games preparations
The Qatar National Olympic Committee (QNOC) announced over $455 million worth of construction projects. The development plan forms part of a much bigger scheme leading Qatar towards the 2006 Asian Games.
“The country must prepare state of the art facilities and venues. A first estimation of the costs of all sports venues is some $1.8 billion,” stated the Secretary General of the Committee, Sheikh Saoud Bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani.
An initial list of 22 construction projects includes the building of a new Doha Sports Complex worth $233 million alone, with $30 million being invested in the Al-Wusayl Shooting Range and $27 million on the re-development of the Doha Stadium. Other major projects include the expansion of the Equestrian Center, building of multi-sports halls and upgrading of the Khalifa Tennis and Squash Complex.
In addition to the construction works, Sheikh Saoud announced 19 major consultancy projects for various projects such as upgrading existing facilities and planning new infrastructure requirements. All of this complements the overall Asian Games Master Plan, due for submission next month.
Of particular interest were the plans for a massive Olympic Village due to be built to accommodate 10,000 athletes and officials. The village will be located close to the existing Hamad Hospital and after the Games, will serve as an accommodation facility for the hospital's staff.
The Asian Games are considered to be one of the biggest multi-sports events in the world with an estimate 6,000 athletes taking part, supported by 3,000 officials and 1,000 journalists. The exact number of sports is presently under review, but Sheikh Saoud said “it would be between 33 and 40 different sporting events”.
The success of Qatar's development plans will be put to the test in 2005 when Doha hosts the 1,800 athlete West Asian Games. This will provide dress rehearsal for the Asian Games in December 2006. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)