Glasgow's Emirates Arena, a 2014 Commonwealth Games facility (Getty Images)
Commonwealth Games inspectors gave the thumbs up to Glasgow 2014 in their final check-up but highlighted the challenges remaining.
The coordination commission of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) on Friday concluded its sixth and final visit to the Scottish city. The three-day review covered all areas of Games planning and delivery for the July 23 to Aug. 3 event.
“As the organizing committee and partners enter the final 15 weeks of mobilization and preparation before the athletes commence arriving on July 13th, they are very well prepared to deliver a successful Commonwealth Games,” commission chair Bruce Robertson said.
He said significant progress had been made since the last co-com in October.
"The most visual indicators we have seen during this visit demonstrating the progress achieved in the past six months were the Commonwealth Games Village and Hampden Park. The village construction is now complete and the organizing committee is the manager onsite and has commenced bump in of temporary overlay, furniture, and fixtures,” he said.
"Hampden Park now has a grass infield in place on the raised deck and this iconic stadium is starting to look like an athletics arena already.”
He also expressed satisfaction with the sponsorship program: "With 33 corporate partners secured, and more to be announced in coming weeks, the Games’ sponsorship program is in great shape.”
Glasgow officials say they have a robust corps of volunteers ready for this year's event. (Getty Images)
Robertson said Glasgow and Scottish community engagement was at “unprecedented levels" with the 15,000 volunteer positions oversubscribed and back-up roles also filled.
He said that through strong financial management, Glasgow 2014 and its partners were well positioned to turn the event into the “best ever Games” through refinement of the services being delivered for the Games clients.
However, he emphasized that in the build-up to the Games, to mobilize the operations and determine readiness would be challenging.
CGF chief executive Mike Hooper added: “There is a lot to be done, and one of the challenges to delivering a Games is managing the activity in the final weeks when installation of temporary overlay, training of the workforce, and installation of equipment, mobilization of transport, security, spectator and related services, and conduct of readiness events all converge.
“It is complex, and there is limited time, but this mobilization period is being well planned and we have every confidence that the challenges will all be met.”
Glasgow 2014 chief executive David Grevemberg said his organization’s focus is now set on getting the details right on frontline delivery, effective operational integration, and ensuring the Games were delivered on time and on budget.
"As we enter the final straight, our focus is that Glasgow and Scotland deliver the best Commonwealth Games ever for the 4,500 athletes of the Commonwealth that we will warmly welcome for a world-class celebration of world-class sport."
AIPS Calls for Free Internet
Press members hope internet access at Hampden Park and other Commonwealth Games venues will be offered free of charge. (Getty Images)
The International Sports Press Association (AIPS) has raised concerns about internet charges for accredited media covering Glasgow 2014.
In an article published on the AIPS website on Wednesday, the organization called for Glasgow 2014 to offer free internet, as was the case at the Sochi 2014 Olympics and previous Commonwealth Games.
At the moment, Glasgow 2014 is asking press organisations to cough up at least £95 plus tax to access the wi-fi service at Games-time.
“We are upset because this choice of the Glasgow organizers shows that they are not up-to-date with the situation of the media. Many organizations have understood that to charge accredited media for internet service is no longer in line with the times," said AIPS president Gianni Merlo.
"It seems the Organizing Committee is living in the past century. I do hope that the LOC can see fit to change the situation because the Commonwealth Games have a strong and established tradition. Many AIPS members will go to Glasgow and I urge the organizers to rethink their decision."
Written by Mark Bisson
For general comments or questions, click here.
20 Years at #1: Your best source of news about the Olympics is AroundTheRings.com, for subscribers only.