Fiera Milano Rho, a trade fairs and exhibitions complex in Milan, has been confirmed as the new venue for speed skating events at the 2026 Winter Olympic Games.
The organising committee of the Games in Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo, Fondazione Milano Cortina 2026, has been seeking a new venue since plans to construct a roof over an outdoor ice rink in Baselga di Pinè were rejected.
A separate proposal was made for speed skating to move to Oval Lingotto, which was developed to host the sport for Turin’s staging of the 2006 Winter Olympics. However, the Fondazione Milano Cortina 2026 board yesterday (Tuesday) unanimously approved the modification of the venue masterplan, opting to retain speed skating at a facility that is set to be developed at Fiera Milano Rho.
The project is expected to cost around €20m (£17.6m/$21.9m) and will involve the development of a temporary structure for Games events. This will cover pavilions 13 and 15, creating a single space of over 35,000 square metres, housing a 400-metre track, seating for 6,500 fans and other facilities.
Fondazione Milano Cortina 2026 said: “The Milanese proposal, entirely financed by private capital, has highlighted, in addition to the advantage of territorial continuity with the other competition sites in ice sports – with the exception of curling – a significant and greater concreteness combined with a reduction in operating costs.
“On this occasion, the competition venue for the speed skating discipline will exist only for the duration of the competitions – a sustainable and innovative formula which will allow Italy to be an example for the next editions of the Games, with a consequent strengthening of the… Olympic Movement.”
Commenting on the decision, Fondazione Fiera Milano president Enrico Pazzali said, according to the Corriere della Sera: “We are absolutely certain of the validity of our unique and innovative project at an international level which will leave a new area at the end of the Games that can also be used for other types of events.”