The 2014 Football World Cup
Venues: We’ve reported in earlier editions on the delays besetting the World Cup venues. World Cup projects are just a part of a bigger national problem casting a pall over Brazil’s grand ambitions: an array of lavish projects conceived when economic growth was surging that now stand abandoned, stalled or wildly over budget.
FIFA now seems confident that the Arena de Sao Paulo will be ready for the opening match. The next key date now is 17-18 May, when the Brazilian championship match between Corinthians and Figueirense will become a World Cup test event. That will give FIFA and organisers three weeks to address anything that is not working. Venues in Sao Paulo, Curitiba, Cuiaba, Porto Alegre, Natal and Manaus missed a 31 December 2014 delivery deadline imposed by world football’s governing body, with only the six stadia used in the Confederations Cup ready ahead of that date. Sao Paulo’s stadium is one of three that is yet to be delivered, along with venues in Cuiaba and Curitiba.
Each of the twelve host cities is required by FIFA, to provide a range of services and facilities to complement the venues. To be paid for by those cities. A number have baulked and certainly trimmed the specs they received since they just don’t have the funds. And some of that spending will not be recouped in any way.
FIFA Fan Fests in Brazil will be set up and offer free admission to secure, family-friendly locations where both local and international fans can watch FIFA World Cup matches on large screens, in a unique ‘FIFA World Cup’ environment. FIFA has claimed that Fan Fests are part of the host city contracts signed by the 12 venues for the World Cup, threatening to sue those that do not stage them. They have said they will not pay entirely for the events, although it was open to reducing requirements and costs to help the host cities.
Security concerns surrounding potential protests at the World Cup have already led some cities to adjust their plans. The locations within the 12 Host Cities are as follows:
Belo Horizonte – Expominas
Brasília – Taguaparque
Cuiaba – Exhibition Park
Curitiba – Pedreira Paulo Leminski
Fortaleza – Iracema Beach
Manaus – Ponta Negra
Natal – Fortress Beach
Porto Alegre – Sunset Amphitheater
Recife – Cais da Alfandega
Rio de Janeiro – Copacabana Beach
Salvador – Aeroclube (under evaluation by the Host City)
Sao Paulo – Anhangabau Valley
FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke has warned that Brazil’s 12 host cities have “no choice” over the organisation of Fan Fests. Nevertheless, officials in Recife, have said the city will not invest public money on the Fan Fest – and are still trying to find sponsors.