Work has been completed on the Ariake Gymnastics Centre, one of the host venues for next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

The venue will have a capacity of 12,000 and will host artistic, rhythmic and trampoline gymnastic events during the Olympics. It will also host boccia events during the Paralympics.

The design of the venue has been inspired by the local timber storage district and has been modelled around the image of wooden ships. Some 2,300 cubic metres of wood, sourced from throughout Japan, have been used to build the venue, making it the most intensive usage of timber across all Tokyo 2020 venues.

The venue will also feature wooden benches in a move designed to give the arena a feeling of warmth. The exterior of the venue was built using Japanese cedar from the Shizuoka, Akita and Miyazaki prefectures, the roof has been made from larch wood from the Nagano and Hokkaido prefectures, and the benches from cedar from the Mie prefecture.

Koichi Fukui, general manager of the venue, said: “It is a space with a real sense of freedom. This is a venue that will satisfy both athletes and spectators.”

Forty-three venues will be used during the Games. Eight of these will be new permanent venues, with 25 existing sites and 10 temporary venues.

The Ariake Gymnastics Centre, which will be located close to the Olympic Village, becomes the fifth new permanent venue to be completed ahead of the Games. The 68,000-seat Olympic Stadium is due to open in November, with the Ariake Arena, which will host events such as volleyball and wheelchair basketball, scheduled to open the following month.

The final permanent venue scheduled to open is the Aquatics Centre, which Tokyo 2020 hopes will be ready by next February.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics will take place from July 24 to August 9, with the Paralympics to follow from August 25 to September 6.

Images: Tokyo 2020