RIO 2016 WILL AVOID EMPTY SEATS

The problem of empty seats has plagued the London Olympic Games but Brazilian organisers promise they will not have the same issue in 2016.

The sporting spotlight is currently on London until Sunday when the last event of this years Games will be concluded and all eyes will then turn to Rio de Janeiro. The iconic Brazilian city is set to host the 2016 Olympic Games and organising committee CEO Leonardo Gryner said that Rio "can do better than London" in ensuring empty seats are not an issue.

Gryner commented: "This is not an exclusive problem here in London, we have noticed this is a challenge for organisers but we have a programme called 'Filled Up Stadium' and we have some ideas of what to do to keep the stadia full at all times."

Organisers of the London Games have faced criticism for the amount of empty seats visible in all of the venues. The issue has been blamed largely on officials from sporting governing bodies and national Olympic committees not using their prime-located seats which are in sight of most photographers and television cameras, making the issue obvious for all to see.

To address the issue, London organisers have attempted to fill empty seats with soldiers and school children and taking back tickets from accredited officials and selling them to the public.

Gruyner said Rio would be more "flexible" with their approach to the seating issue and added: "We would be constantly selling seats and we have to give opportunity to people who are in the surrounding area who can easily enter whenever there are empty seats. We hope to do better than London but we understand it's not an easy challenge.

"We will be able to have a better result in Rio than London has had so far, we will also not build huge venues that will be difficult to fill."

The first event at the 2016 Games, the first to be held in South America, will be the opening ceremony in the famous Estádio do Maracanã.

Posted on 07/08/2012