Hangzhou 2022 celebrates two years to go to 19th Asian Games

Big Lotus - main stadium for Hangzhou 2022. © zj.zjol.com.cn
Big Lotus - main stadium for Hangzhou 2022. © zj.zjol.com.cn

Hangzhou, China, September 10, 2020: Welcoming the two-year countdown to the opening of the 19th Asian Games on Thursday, host city Hangzhou exudes confidence of delivering an Asiad that has "Chinese grandeur, Zhejiang style and Hangzhou flavour".

From venues and infrastructure construction to marketing, from cultural activities-planning to Games promotion, Hangzhou has made steady progress since it was awarded the hosting rights by the OCA in September 2015, reports Xinhua News.

The Chairman of the OCA Coordination Committee, Raja Randhir Singh, lauded Hangzhou 2022's preparations upon hearing their reports during the third Coordination Committee virtual meeting on Tuesday.

"There is no doubt in my mind that we will have a great Asian Games - one of the finest we have had," he said.

Along the Qiantang river, a butterfly is fluttering over a lotus - that is the view formed by the Natatorium of the Hangzhou Olympic & Expo Center standing a stone's throw from the "Big Lotus" main stadium for the 2022 Asian Games.

The Natatorium is one of the 12 newly-built competition venues. 42 of the 53 venues are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2020 and the rest by March 2021, with fixtures and fittings to be installed by the end of June 2021 in time for test events. Organisers say work is ahead of schedule by 9.4 percent.

"Despite the impact brought by the COVID-19 outbreak, we will stick with our goals. We are confident we will finish the work as scheduled and up to a high standard," Li Shenfei, deputy director of the HAGOC Venues Department, told Xinhua.

Financing for the Games is also robust, as a batch of domestic enterprises including automaker Geely, e-commerce giants Alibaba and sportswear manufacturer 361sport have inked sponsorship deals with HAGOC. The 22 sponsors in three categories include eight top-level Prestige Partners.

With the Asian Games as a catalyst for investment and infrastructure construction, such as Hangzhou West Railway Station, Terminal 4 of the Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport and more expressways and highways, Hangzhou 2022 hopes to leave a lasting legacy for the residents in terms of sports and recreation facilities for the public.

More sports parks will be built in the future to ensure people can access sports facilities within a 10-minute walk and an Asian Games-themed park will be found in every district and county of Hangzhou.

The Asian Games will be held in a "smart" environment thanks to the high-tech communications of Prestige Partners China Mobile and China Telecom providing 5G and Virtual Reality (VR) viewing with a 360-degree watching experience.

Thirty intelligence solutions in 10 key areas were unveiled in August to improve the operational efficiency of the Games and provide athletes, spectators and tourists with top-notch services.

Relying on the cloud technology of Alibaba, Hangzhou 2022 strives to become the first "Asian Games in the Cloud," using cloud intelligent technology in core systems including event management, event results and event support.

Two years ago, an invitation was sent to the world - "Welcome to Hangzhou". 

With two years to go, the city is determined to honour its promises of a "Green, Smart, Economical and Ethical" Games in 2022.