Monday, April 11, 2011

Race to the under-20 World Cup

Ave. 26, alongside Independence Park. Will buses be running here July 29?
Colombia is to host the 2011 under-20 football World Cup. But before Colombia can use home team advantage to try to win the cup, it's got to win the race against time to have its cities and stadiums ready for Colombia's biggest-ever sports event. More info here.

The soccer World Cup starts July 29 and lasts 20 days. Bogotá officials have promised that the new Transmilenio lines will be operating, even if all the stations aren't finished yet. What do you think?

Ave. 26, which connects the airport with downtown, near the Central Cemetery.
Here, the roadwork has advanced and the stations are taking shape. 
I've also heard reports that repair work on some of the stadiums and associated facilities, particularly those in Cartagena and Cali, is behind schedule.

Rush hour traffic jam on Seventh Ave. Will visitors have to
suffer through this?
The U-20 Cup is sort of Colombia's coming-out party, its chance to show that the 'Colombia-as-failed-state' and 'Colombia-as-war-torn, drug-corrupted-wreck,' is all in the past. If Colombia does a good job on the U-20 World Cup, then, who knows, it could put itself in the running to host the REAL World Cup.

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

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