(ANSA) - Naples, May 3 - The Italian National Olympics Committee (CONI) will be lending a hand to the 2019 Universiade in Naples.
The international multi-sport event is often referred to in English as the World University Games or World Student Games.
CONI will work alongside the state-owned CONI Servizi and the commissioner to ensure that the games are held after they initially ran up against several obstacles. It will speed up preparations for the event, according to an agreement signed on Friday. "This is a great challenge," CONI Servizi managing director Alberto Miglietta said. "That we are counting on winning. The challenge is to the entire country and not only Naples or the Campania region, to be ready for July 2019." He added that "we will contribute in terms of know-how gained by the organization over the course of many international events. We will be on the front line as concerns the entire organizational and practical parts of the event, bringing in human resources and skills. We will do it." The issue of housing the athletes will also likely be solved soon.
Commissioner Luisa Latella noted that the Italian National Anti-Corruption Authority (ANAC) had told the public administration not to have relations with MSC - the company it had contacted to host the athletes onboard cruise ships that would have been anchored in the Naples port for this purpose. ANAC's decision was due to the lack of a "cooling-off period" for a manager from the public sector prior to moving to the private sector. Having discarded the possibility of the ships, there may instead be a village built in the Mostra d'Oltremare, which had already been named as the headquarters of the event.
The project under assessment calls for the building of 2,500 pre-fab cabins for 7,200 athletes and authorization is expected to come in within the next 15 days. "This was Plan B but it has become Plan A and the only possibility," Miglietta said.
Meanwhile, Commissioner Latella admits that there are a number of difficulties, saying that "it is a race against time, but the idea of a village meets the aim of this event to leave a legacy to the place where it is held. The cabins (each of which can hold up to three athletes) would remain at the disposal of the area and would be distributed to the territories in need of them." Meanwhile, there has also been progress for works to be carried out on 63 sports facilities across 24 municipalities of Campania involved in the games.
"Fifty-five projects have been approved," the commissioner said, "and in some locations work has already begun. In a few days we will put the first stone of the Baronissi stadium, work has begun on the Mostra pool and others will begin shortly."