Countdown to the Winter Olympics 2014
Sochi was selected to host the Games back in 2007 and it’s about as far south as you can possibly go in Russia, lying beneath the Caucasus Mountains along the Black Sea coast. Paradoxically, it’s a place known for its sub-tropical climate too and with average February temperatures of 8.3° C, it’s the warmest city ever to play host.
The Games, with an estimated cost of $51 Billion, are also predicted to be the most expensive ever and don’t come devoid of controversy. Partially funded by Russia’s billionaires, they’re purported to be three times more costly than London 2012. There’s the human toll too; stories of residents ousted from their homes to make way for necessary building works, whilst across the Caucasus Mountains civil unrest and fighting continues.
Despite all this, it remains an exciting time for spectators and competitors alike. The Games are the first ever for the Russian Federation (the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow being in the Soviet Union) and we can look forward to 98 events in 15 winter sports over two weeks of celebrations – all swiftly followed by the Paralympic Winter Games that run from 7 – 16 March.
Currently though, it’s a race to get everything ready in time. The whole thing is being made from scratch and it’s a massive engineering project that includes not just new venues, but modernising the telecom, power and transport infrastructure of the entire area that has lacked investment since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
The new Olympic Park remains under construction, but promises to be fabulous. It’s right on the coast and aims to keep everything compact, with all indoor venues gathered within walking distance. Transport links including the new Sochi Light Metro will connect this with the alpine resort of Krasnaya Polyana where the all the thrills and excitement of the skiing, ski-jumping and bobsleigh events will take place.
So, after last year’s summer of sport are you set for the next big Olympic treat? Here at The Summit we aim to keep you posted with news and events, but if you would like to register for the official ticket programme, then visit the Olympic website www.sochi2014.com . Tickets go on sale this Spring.
The Opening Ceremony for the Olympic Winter Games in 2014 was held on the 7th February, check out the video below: