The International Olympic Committee (IOC’s) Coordination Commission for the 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games in Innsbruck in 2012 ended its fourth and final visit to the city Tuesday.
Gian-Franco Kasper, Chairman of the commission, was reportedly impressed with the progress of the Youth Olympic Village that is to accommodate about 1,660 athletes and officials during the Games, and as a legacy will be used as affordable housing once the Games end.
Kasper said, “the Innsbruck Organising Committee heads into the final few months of preparation with an extremely organized and creative team who are working tirelessly to ensure an unforgettable elite sporting event for the world’s best young winter athletes. This unique host city has a rich Olympic history, and today we can feel the excitement building as it makes history again with the 1st Winter Youth Olympic Games”.
Several new disciplines will be seen for the first time at an Olympic event during Innsbruck 2012, including snowboard, slopestype, ski half pipe, and ice hockey skills challenge. Integrated into the sports program for the first time is women’s ski jumping.
The commission was also pleased to note the full integration of the Culture and Education Programme (CEP) into the overall schedule for athletes, spectators and local schools, enabling athletes to learn new skills, experience different cultures, and cover key topics such as the benefits of healthy lifestyles, the dangers of doping, and the values of friendship, solidarity and fair play.
The volunteer program launched earlier this year has attracted almost 2,500 applicants from 40 countries, and partnerships with 12 international universities have also been secured.
An 18-day Torch Relay will visit 50 national locations.
Innsbruck 2012 will celebrate its 100-day countdown in a month and will take the opportunity to present a number of initiatives and events to mark the milestone.