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Sochi's Media Village Isn't Ready Yet

Sochi's Media Village Isn't Ready Yet
Reuters

Last week, images of unfinished infrastructure around Sochi, including hotels, bus stops, parks and sidewalks, began circulating around the Internet. Now, with only days to spare before the first athletic events Thursday, media from around the world have arrived to document their unfinished accommodations.

According to the Sochi Olympic organizing committee, only six of the nine hotels in the media village are ready for occupancy and the International Olympic Committee is asking them to resolve all issues fast. 

Persistent rain is to blame for many of the delays. IOC spokesman Mark Adams insists the construction woes aren't as bad as they seem, telling reporters, "every Games has some last minute issues. These are being handled, and handled well." 

Some members of the media were turned away from the hotels they reserved. Joerg Reuter, a photographer from Germany, booked a room in a hotel that had officially been declared open. But in a letter he wrote to the organizing committee, Reuter said there were no lights, "yellow/brown" water from the taps, sleeping construction workers, and a stray dog among in the rooms he was shown. Eventually, he moved to a different hotel.

The organizing committee says that any media member given an unfinished room will receive new accommodations. 

As for the three unfinished media hotels, organizers say that they're going through "the final testing process and check of their services." Adams says the IOC is confident they'll be finished before the Games start but added that he wouldn't put his "life on the line" about it.


A construction worker works on a pipe in the mountain media village on top of the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach) 


Trash is seen on the walkway in front of a hotel in the mountain media village on top of the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Dominic Ebenbichler) 


Construction workers work on the pavement next to an unfinished hotel in the mountain media village on top of the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)


Building debris and a mechanical digger stand outside the Panorama hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


Building debris is left outside the Gorki Plaza East hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


A view into an unfinished area of the Gorki Plaza East hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


Workers clean the area outside the Panorama hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


Building debris is left outside the Gorki Plaza East hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


Building debris is left outside the Gorki Grand hotel in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)


A woman tries to clean the window of an unopened shop that is being prepared in a mall at the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach) 


A "opening soon" sign is pictured on an unopened shop in a mall at the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)


Trash bins are pictured in front of unfinished buildings in the mountain media village on top of the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)


Workers enjoy the sun in front of unfinished buildings in the mountain media village on top of the village of Esto Sadok at the Rosa Khutor alpine resort near Sochi, February 2, 2014. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)

Mark Byrnes is an associate editor at The Atlantic Cities. All posts »

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