Remodeling works are set to begin at Ancient Olympia, the site that hosted the first Olympic Games in antiquity in Greece, with the aim to establish the historic site as an international center for Olympic education, the Hellenic Olympic Committee (HOC) announced.
The HOC agreed to proceed with upgrade works in collaboration with the International Olympic Academy (IOA) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Upgrade works, scheduled to begin after the lighting ceremony on March 12 for this year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, are set to be completed by June 2021, before the IOC Session in Athens. The project is budgeted at 12.5 million dollars, to be covered by the IOC.
“This aid will go towards improving and modernizing outdated and old facilities. And I look forward to June 2021, when the renovation is complete and the International Olympic Academy will be ready to operate, making Olympia the center of the true Olympic Spirit,” said HOC President and IOC member Spyros Capralos, describing the decision as “historic”.
In the meantime, for the first time in the history of the Olympic Games, a woman – Greek Olympic shooting champion Anna Korakaki – will be the first torchbearer to launch the Olympic Torch Relay, receiving first and transporting the flame from ceremonial lighting ceremony in Ancient Olympia on March 12.
The Olympic Flame will then travel to Tokyo for the 2020 Olympic Games to take place on July 24-August 9.