• Short Summary

    The 22nd Olympic Games in 1980 have become a matter of State importance for the Soviet Union.

  • Description

    The 22nd Olympic Games in 1980 have become a matter of State importance for the Soviet Union.

    The Soviet authorities have been working strenuously for the past few years to prove that Moscow has ample facilities to stage the Games. The final decision lies with the 75 members f the International Olympic Committee (IOC) who will meet on Wednesday (23 October) to make their choice.

    Moscow -- which lost out to Montreal for the 1976 Games -- has plenty in its favour as an Olympic venue. The city boasts five huge sports complexes -- any which could stage most of an Olympics just as they are. There are already 26 boxing halls, 76 gymnasia, 69 stadia, 30 swimming halls and many other facilities.

    The two major centres are the Luzhniki complex and the Krylatskoye complex.

    The Luzhniki complex includes the Legin soccer and athletics stadium, which has a capacity of about 103,000. Krylatskeys, on the eastern outskirts of Moscow, has facilities for swimming, archery, rowing, equestrian, canoaing and cycling events. A new Olympic village has been planned for Izmailovo park on the opposite side of the city from Luzhniki. The Soviet authorities gian to connect the major contres by building new high-speed ring roads.

    The Soviets have promised to provide easy entry into the country for national Olympic teams and visitors to the Games, and have told the 100 that the best television coverage of the Games would be available.

    But a major worry for the Soviets is accommodation. There are an estimated 16,000 beds available in hotels, and about another 10,000 in guest houses and hostels. Moscow will need about 250,000 beds if it is to stage the Games and the Soviet authorities are planning to build another fifteen hotels to meet the demand. Negotiations have already begun with a major United States hotel chain.

    A massive influx of visitors to Moscow would also greatly strain the city's restaurants and eating houses, and apart from theaters, ballet and orchestras, other forms of entertainment are rare.

    But the Russians have every reason to expect that the IOC will confirm Moscow as the 1980 Olympics venue.

    The major rival city -- Los Angeles -- appeared to have lost interest when it presented its case to the general meeting of international sporting federation sin Lucerns in May.

    The present indications are that Moscow will at last be chosen as an Olympic city.

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