Preparations for the upcoming Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics are gradually shifting focus from venue construction to the management and operation of competition centers, Zhang Jiandong, executive vice-president of the Beijing 2022 organizing committee, said on Friday.
"The competition venues in Yanqing will meet the requirements for holding test events in October, while other venues will reach the stage next year," Zhang, who is also vice-mayor of Beijing, said during a "passage interview" before the closing of the second session of the 13th National People's Congress.
Management for those venues will be strengthened this year as a series of world-class test events will be held continuously there until 2020, he said.
Starting in February 2020, he said, a series of 20 test events are scheduled, running through the first half of 2021. Seven of those will be held in Zhangjiakou.
The 2022 Winter Olympics will use 26 competition and non-competition venues in downtown Beijing, Yanqing district in the city's northwestern suburbs, and co-host city Zhangjiakou in Hebei province.
By the end of this year, the Beijing-Zhangjiakou high-speed railway and the Yanqing-Chongli expressway is expected to complete construction, Zhang said.
Zhang sees 2019 as a key year to prepare for the 2022 Winter Olympics for both Beijing and Zhangjiakou as several important activities have been scheduled.
The mascots for the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will be unveiled in the next half of the year, according to Zhang. Volunteer recruitment for the Beijing 2022 will also be launched at the end of 2019.