Sochi 2014 President Chernyshenko Says Olympic Legacy Benefits Already Revealed

October 14, 2011

Sochi 2014 president and CEO Dmitry Chernyshenko believes the legacy of the Winter Olympics is already being shown with sports participation levels soaring in Russia as a result of the Games.

Speaking at the International Sports Event Management conference in London Thursday, he said: “We already can witness the legacy of Sochi – last year sport participation in the country increased by 17 percent and by 35 percent in the region where the Games will be held.”

“Everything we are doing is about legacy. It would be unforgivable to invest such a huge amount of money and effort just for two weeks of fun. It’s about a long-lasting legacy for the generations to come, a social and environmental legacy. I’m confident our legacy with be unprecedented.”

Chernyshenko’s comments came in a conference session focusing on the social and environmental legacy of Russia’s first Winter Olympics Games.

He also spoke about the massive building effort to develop venues and infrastructure for the Games on a fast-track timetable.

“Our disadvantage was having had nothing in Sochi when we started from scratch but that was also a competitive advantage because we were able to create a state-of-the-art infrastructure. Russia had to invest more resources and overcome more red-tape barriers than ever before to implement this huge project and pass through a huge gap to reach the appropriate level of environment to bring out the spirit of the new Russia through positive sustainable change. The investment to Sochi is so impressive, it is comparable to construction of a new city.” he told delegates.

Reinforcing this the Black Sea resort is now the biggest construction site in Europe if not the world, he added: “We are working 24/7 to deliver more than 800 different venues because we are using this opportunity to develop the entire region. It’s a very ambitious project.

“We are well on track, on budget and on time… and we are already enjoying the legacy now because the preparations are already bringing about some social improvements.”