Keith Joseph, chair of the Lima 2019 Coordination Commission, has praised the “world standard” level of sports infrastructure being built for the Peruvian capital’s upcoming staging of the Pan American and Parapan American Games.
Lima is due to stage the Pan American Games multi-sport event from July 26 to August 11 next year, with the Parapan American Games to follow from August 23 to September 1.
Joseph (pictured), who is also a Panam Sports vice-president, said that facilities currently being prepared for the events will help transform the sporting landscape in Peru.
Speaking during a recent Coordination Commission working visit to Lima, Joseph said: “We believe that the infrastructure that is being built will be of a world standard. The velodrome, for example, will allow the country to host important events in the future, like the Pan-American cycling championships. (Lima’s swimming) pool will be the most modern.
“I think it’s amazing how sport brings people together. It’s important to sensitise people about the important value that sports bring. Therefore, the interactions and exchange of cultural experiences with the people of the 41 countries that will come here, some of whom will come with their families, is something that is always valuable.
“And I also believe that it will stimulate the interest among the Peruvian population towards sports in terms of general welfare. I believe that the changes that are being made in traffic can also have a lasting impact. And, in general, if things go well, Lima 2019 will have enormous socioeconomic benefits, such as tourism. I think the city of Lima is one of the best kept secrets in the world, so the more people come and experience here, the better. That will be one of the most lasting legacies.”
The 2019 Pan American Games are set to feature approximately 6,700 athletes from 41 countries, competing in 39 sports and 62 disciplines. The Parapan American Games will see 1,890 athletes compete in 17 sports and 18 disciplines.
Ninety-five per cent of construction work for the events will be completed by next March, according to Lima 2019 president Carlos Neuhaus.
Image: Lima 2019