The new National Stadium being built for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be used exclusively for team ball sports like soccer and rugby after the games, sources told Kyodo News on Tuesday.
Government officials, the sources said, are finalizing plans to build seats on top of the running track around the field of the main Olympic stadium, which is scheduled for completion in late November 2019.
The decision to not make it a multipurpose venue, as many stadiums are in Japan, is aimed at bringing in a steady stream of revenue to offset the expected high maintenance costs.
The Japan Sports Agency will try to soothe the Japan Association of Athletics Federations and meet with the Japan Football Association and Japan Rugby Football Union before attempting to rubber-stamp the decision in September.
Future athletics meets such as the world and national championships are on course to be held at Ajinomoto Stadium in suburban Tokyo, which will be renovated to international standards.
Not helping athletics’ case is the requirement of a subtrack for major competitions. The National Stadium lacks the space for a nearby subtrack; for the Tokyo Olympics, a temporary facility will be built on the neighboring premises of Jingu Stadium.