The choice in 1966 of Sapporo as the sits for the 1972 Winter Olympics hastened on already quickening building and modernisation programme in that Japanese city.
The choice in 1966 of Sapporo as the sits for the 1972 Winter Olympics hastened on already quickening building and modernisation programme in that Japanese city. Now, with the opening ceremony for the 11th Winter Games due on Thursday (3 February), everything appears to be ready. There is controversy, however, centering around Avery Brundage, the 84-year-old President of the International olympic Committee.
On Monday (31 January), after months of controversy and warnings from the President, the I.O.C. voted to disqualify Australian skier Karl Schranz for alleged involvement in commercial advertising. The Australian team has said it would withdraw if any of its members were disqualified. If they should decide to do so, other top teams could follow suit--a situation that could be disastrous for the Olympics and Japan.
In order to get Sapporo as the sits for this year's Winter Games, the Japanese had to do an enormous amount of lobbying. Accordingly they set out to justify the claims they have made for the northern city. One new building after another has created probably the most modern city centre in all of Japan. The application of construction of a new underground system and other facilities had to be approved in Tokyo under the national budget. The Olympic Village, which houses the athletes and officials, is a miniature town, with shops, restaurants, banks and theatre already established. The entire complex will be turned over to the public at the end of the Games.
All of the sites for the various sporting events are now read, although lack of snow on the ski slopes had officials worried. To ensure an ample supply, elements of four army division brought snow in to prepare the courses. This VISNEWS library compilation shows preparations for the Winter Games, including the Olympic Flame being brought to Sapporo, the Olympic Village, and teams practising for various events.