More Rio Woes As Swimming Venue is Forced To Cut 1250 Seats

While open water athletes have already had to contend with recent reports that Rio’s water pollution problem is only growing, now those who want to see pool swimming have a problem of their own. According to a report from Globo Esporte, construction required the installation of massive steel support pillars that will create blind spots at the corner of the stadium.

The result will be a reduction of 1,250 seats to the venue. Such a blow might have been mitigated had the seating capacity for Rio not already been considered too low by Olympic standards. The reduction takes the aquatic venue’s capacity from 13,750 to 12,500. London’s aquatic venue seated nearly one and a half times that amount at 17,500. One has to return to the similarly plagued venues of Athens in 2004 to find a similar capacity (11,500).

Within Brazil, where focus is on the economic impact of the games, the story is similarly negative. The installation of the support pillars mean that the Olympic Aquatics Stadium will now have a cost overrun of 10.5 million real (2.8 million dollars). Likewise, the lost ticket revenue from the reduced capacity will be roughly the same amount (10.6 million real).

The venue is also controversial within Brazil because organizers have said it will be temporary and thus far there are no plans to reuse the pool at another location, as the US has with it’s Olympic trials pools the last few cycles.



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5 years ago

See the link. I am sure people would pay a discounted price to sit in those seats. They arent crazy bad seats and you get the atmosphere of being there. Big screens? I sit at concerts and watch the screen half the time.

Second thought. Seaworld could make the pool deeper and use the stadium for an Orca show…at least that would be a use for the pool after the games. The Brazilian sprinters could get jobs racing a baby orca in the 50M sprint in a man vs animal type thing. Also see the pretty photos of all the grass around the stadium but it looks like they have already poured cement everywhere. What is cheaper sod or… Read more »

5 years ago

Look on the bright side… because the finals are now 1am, 2am, etc. most spectators will be asleep and not need to see the races properly so “restricted viewing” is OK.

5 years ago

We were spiked with Beijing and London. These Olympics are gonna be terrible.

Reply to  Pvdh
5 years ago


Gina Rhinestone
Reply to  Pvdh
5 years ago

I think spiked is good . when the political winds change , stuff will miraculously appear.

About Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis is a swim coach, writer and swimming enthusiast. Chris does private consulting and coaching with teams and individuals. You can find him at Chris is a 2009 Graduate from the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania. He was the first professional athletic coach …

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