The National Stadium in Tokyo could be replaced with a new, modern venue with double capacity, ready to host the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
The new arena would be then featured as a main stadium for the 2020 Olympic Games as well, which Japan is hoping to win after losing the race for the 2016 edition to Rio de Janeiro.
“We are in talks with the stadium owners and Tokyo government about it being the venue for both the World Cup and the Olympics,” said Tatsuzo Yabe, chairman of the Japan Rugby Football Union (JRFU).
The stadium would be upgraded to anywhere between 80,000 and 100,000 seats. “We have to knock down the current National Stadium – it is old and only has a capacity of around 50,000,” Yabe said. The project is worth Y100 billion ($1.3 billion) and it could be finalized by 2018.
“It will have seats which can be moved in when we need the track for the Olympics and back for ball games like soccer and rugby,” he said.
For the Rugby World Cup, Japan has many other arenas available besides the main National Stadium. The 10 grounds which were used at the 2002 soccer World Cup are possible choices, Yabe added.