Zaha Hadid has made a fresh pitch for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic stadium, after her original winning entry was controversially thrown out.
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe last month scrapped the design as too expensive as costs reached an estimated $2bn – but the UK-Iraqi architect’s firm have now put together a fresh entry to the design competition.
It includes a video and 91 page report which addresses some of the issues surrounding the decision to reject the proposal.
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Hadid criticized that decision, saying it wouldn’t solve the cost problem.
Yesterday (Tuesday) her firm said the design could be tweaked to lower costs and blamed the rising price tag on local construction fees and suggested introducing greater competition among contractors.
To start over from scratch was an “unnecessary risk,” the firm said.
In a statement Hadid’s design studio said: “The video presentation and report outline in detail the unique design for the New National Stadium which has been developed over two years to be the most compact and efficient stadium for this very special location in Tokyo.
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“Zaha Hadid Architects welcomes a new contractor bidding process for the New National Stadium to reduce costs and ensure value for money in terms of quality, durability and long-term sustainability.
“Designed by Zaha Hadid Architects and our Japanese partners, the New National Stadium contains all the knowledge and expertise gained from the team’s direct experience of other Olympic, World Cup and World Championship stadia.
“The substantial investment in time, effort and resources already made by the Government and people of Japan into the existing team over the past two years ensures the New National Stadium can be completed in time to welcome the world to Japan in 2019 ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and become a new home for sport for many future generations of Japan’s athletes, sportsmen and women.”
Richard Rogers, who judged the original contest which handed the stadium design to Zaha Hadid Architects, has also stepped into the controversy.
He said: “For Japan to lose their nerve now, and abandon a design by one of the world’s foremost living architects that was selected by an international jury, will not only result in a poorer quality stadium for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, but also in damage to Japan’s international credibility, and reputation as a promoter of world-class architectural design.
“Every major project faces challenges, but architect and client can almost always work together to resolve them. If the design needs to change in response to cost or other issues, I am sure that the Zaha Hadid Architects team would be willing to make them.”