Turkish construction companies ensure Istanbul 2020 preparedness
CHAD WISE / Sports Features Communications
(SFC) Zafer Çağlayan, economic minister for Turkey, recently announced Turkey’s construction industry had obtained 154 international projects worth $14 billion so far this year, strengthening Istanbul 2020’s credentials to deliver the infrastructure required for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games.
The country’s construction industry is now active in 1010 countries around the world and began 40 projects in 27 countries worth $2.4 billion just in the month of July. Engineering News Record magazine’s top 225 international contractors for 2012 has more Turkish contractors than any other country apart from China.
The International Olympic Committee Evaluation Commission stated earlier this year it was “confident that given the government’s full support and the proven track record of TOKI [State agency for construction] to date, construction works could be funded and completed on time, in line with construction best-practices and standards and would meet Games requirements.” Istanbul 2020’s proposed rugby sevens stadium, İnönü Stadium, will be completed in 2014.
“The recent news that Turkey has one of the world’s leading construction industries confirms what we have been saying all along: if Istanbul wins the right to host the Games in 2020 we will deliver on time and on budget,” Istanbul 2020 Bid Chairman Hasan Arat said.
“Istanbul 2020 is in a unique position for a Bid Committee, because all of our delivery structures are already in place. We have a dedicated Olympic Law already embedded in our national legislation that guarantees financial support from the government and immediate cash flow. And in TOKI, we already have a powerful and existing delivery agency with a proven track record of delivering high-quality infrastructure on time and on budget.
“If Istanbul is awarded the honour of being named the 2020 host city, we are ready to start work immediately – no delays, no bureaucracy, no risk. Istanbul 2020 will guarantee Games delivery.”
Olympic venue and facility construction has been planned alongside Turkey’s 2023 Master Plan and the National Sports Plan. Only nine permanent new venues will need to be built for the 37 total planned, with 11 already in place and 11 planned and six temporary venues. İnönü Stadium will be completed no matter the International Olympic Committee’s Host City decision, while the majority of spending is already underway or planned. Around $1.1 billion of the non-OCOG infrastructure budget will be spent on capital works for the Games.
In all, the country’s government estimates Turkish construction companies have undertaken 7,1818 projects worldwide worth $252 billion.
“A majority of these projects were undertaken after 2002,” Çağlayan said. “While our contractors undertook 110 projects for $2.4 billion in 2001, now they reached 40 projects for around $2.3 billion in just one month.”
Istanbul is bidding against Madrid and Tokyo to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games. The International Olympic Committee will select the Host City at the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires 7 September.
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