26 April 2010

FIFA makes me sick

FIFA has asked that the State government of Rio de Janeiro change the architectural plans for the Maracanã project, asking to cancel this week's call for construction proposals to "modernize" the stadium. Why? The architectural plans for the lower seats are "not inclined enough". I had assumed that there had been an error of some kind in the drawings, or that the presence of the new luxury boxes would have changed the angles, or something more obvious, like the seat backs for the FIFA overlords weren't high enough, or wide enough, or didn't vibrate with a Swiss twizzler, French tickler option button. But it was worse than I imagined:

As reported by Lance! and passed on at copa2014.org.br:
"O problema principal é a mudança da altura das placas de publicidade instaladas ao lado dos gramados, de 90 cm para um metro, definida pela federação internacional de futebol. Com essa barreira visual mais alta, toda a visibilidade dos torcedores seria alterada e daí a necessidade de reestruturar os projetos de arquibancadas."

The principal problem is the change in height of the advertizing boards that line the field, from 90cm to one meter, as defined by FIFA. With the higher visual barrier, all of the sightlines of the spectators will be altered and as a result the entire structure of the stands will need to be changed. 

Let me get this straight. FIFA is demanding that at least 4 of the current stadium projects (Brasilia, Sao Paulo, Rio, Belo Horizonte), worth billions of public Reales, be delayed and their architecture refigured (increasing their already astronomical prices), so that their advertisers can have 30cm more height during the 64 games of the 2014 World Cup? Pelo amor de Deus gente! It's a crime! It's the most rediculous thing I have ever heard! The website that reported the news is sponsored by the national syndicate or architecture and engineering (SINAENCO), and not a sound of protest! Hey! FIFA! Vai tomar no c*!

Let me repeat: FIFA is demanding that at least 4 publicly funded World Cup stadiums change their architectural plans and delay the start of construction so that their "partners" can have ads that are 30cm higher. Hey! FIFA! Vai tomar no c*!

As I have catalogued here time and time again, the projects are already behind schedule, which will increase the cost of every stadium project. Since 2009, the total bill for the 12 stadium projects has increased by 20% and South Africa has just reported that their stadiums cost twice the original estimates. Can you imagine what the cost of the Brazilian stadiums will be 4 years from now? The obvious well and truly boggles the mind.

24 April 2010

Minister of Sport Orlando Silva lets a big cat out of a small bag

In a nod to the geography of the obvious, Orlando Silva Jr., Lula's Minister of Sport, confirmed yesterday that only 8 cities are necessary to host the World Cup. Cities that have not begun their construction projects by May 3 run the risk of being eliminated from the tournament. This includes Rio de Janeiro, Natal, Salvador, São Paulo, Cuiaba, Manaus, and a couple others that have not yet made public the bidding for the projects

Silva also confirmed that it was president Lula that made the decision to have 12 instead of 8 cities involved in the World Cup, comfirming the notion that the World Cup is an opportunity for political favoritism, paybacks, nepotism, and party politics to run their unhappy course. No one has yet mentioned anything about the problems of having the head of the CBF also direct the Local Organizing Committee or that his daughter is the secretary general, or that they're both related to the former president of FIFA.  

The World Cup should happen in Brasil, but it should not be a German, Swiss, French, or British World Cup. It can be done with fiscal constraint, with intelligent planning, with coordination between cities and states, with the involvement of urban and regional planners, with intelligent architects who design stadiums that fold into the urban and social fabric before, during, and after the Cup. Since the projects have yet to begin, there is still hope, but time is running out

The minister's unscripted recognition (that he later recanted) that there are multiple projects way behind schedule, and that the federal government could not and would not take responisbility for overssing the projects because they "are an issue that the cities and states have to deal with", clearly demonstrates a lack of co-ordination and the faulty institutional structures that allow billions to flow seamlessly from government coffers into private pockets, while delivering hastily constructed behemoths that have no relationship with the people and places in which they squat

19 April 2010

Maracanã robbed! Botafogo Wins Carioca, the odyssey begins

The office of TWA, the company responsible for selling tickets to the Maracanã was robbed on Saturday, complicating ticket sales for the final game of the Taça Rio between Botafogo and Flamengo (won by O Glorioso). How is it that an office housed within the stadium itself, guarded by a special Stadium Police Force (GEPE) and a private security firm, behind 3 meter gates can get robbed the night before the final game of the championship? Strange indeed. 

Other robberies probably took place during the game as the law requiring that all game receipts be made public within 24 hours has been ignored by FERJ. The only information regarding attendance and money is that there were 50,303 paying spectators that generated R$ 1,677,565, for an average ticket price of R$33.34 - far above the R$19,00 average for the semi-finals. This is obviously incomplete information as the Vasco x Flamengo game had more than 6,000 free tickets issued. The entierty of the receipts for the Campeonato Carioca can be found here - with the glaring exception of yesterday's final. Curious. (Note - the receipts were posted on Tuesday 20/04)

With the end of the Carioca, we may actually see the beginning of the construction project for the 2014 World Cup, but don't hold your breath as there don't appear to be any architects, engineers, or anyone at all contracted to carry off the R$ 600,000,000 reforms. 

11 April 2010

Vasco (1) x Flamengo (2)

Well, nothing like a sour taste in one's mouth to end a trip to the Maracanã. To com sabor bastante armargo na boca depois de um gol legal anulado, um penalty duvidoso, e as orelhas cheio de cantos Mengistas. Mas tudo bem, foi um jogo emocionante (de nível muito baixo) e pode ser a ultima vez que vou ao Maracanã antes das reformas começam. Para seguir com o mistério de FERJ, aqui estão os dados do jogo:
Renda: R$ 774.920,00 Público Pagante: 24.299 pessoas Público Presente: 32.442 pessoas. That's 8.143 people in for free, when the tickets for the arquibancada were R$50. Which means that the clubs, FERJ, the CBF and whoever else gained free tickets worth R$407.150. Multiply this by the 18 games Flamengo played in the Campeonato Carioca and you get R$7.328.700. And the clubs wonder why they are going broke. They're getting robbed by thier own federation and club directors. Tudo que acontece no futebol brasileiro sai de uma caixa preta que tem sete chaves para abrir nove cadeados. Não da, não. 

Some photos from the day:


2014 World Cup Rio de Janeiro Maracanã FIFA 2016 Olympics 2016 Summer Olympics Eduardo Paes CBF Copa do Mundo 2014 Rio de Janeiro Olympics Ricardo Texeira World Cup 2014 Vasco da Gama 2010 World Cup White Elephants mega-events APO UPP BRT Brazil football Flamengo Lula Orlando Silva violence ANT Aldeia Maracana Carlos Nuzman Dilma Eike Batista Rio 2016 Sergio Cabral 2007 Pan American Games Campeonato Carioca Corruption IOC Jerome Valcke Novo Maracanã stadiums BOPE BRASIL 2016 Brasil 2014 Engenhao Joao Havelange Maracana Policia Militar Vila Autódromo Aldo Rebelo Botafogo Henrique Meirelles Medida Provisoria Metro Revolta do Vinagre Sao Paulo Sepp Blatter World Cup 2010 forced removal Carnaval Elefantes Brancos Fechadao Marcia Lins Minerao Morumbi Odebrecht Porto Maravilha Rio+20 Romario Security Walls South Africa South Africa 2010 TCU Transoeste protests public money public transportation slavery transparency x-Maracana Andrew Jennings Argentina Audiencia Publica Barcelona Brazil Carvalho Hosken Comitê Popular Confederatons Cup Copa do Brasil 2010 Cost overruns Crisis of Capital Accumulation EMOP FERJ Favela do Metro Fluminense Fluminese Fonte Novo IMX Jose Marin Leonel Messi London 2012 Marcelo Freixo Maré Museu do Indio Olympic Delivery Authority Perimetral Rocinha Soccerex Transcarioca bicycles consumer society debt idiocy militarization transportation 1995 Rugby World Cup 2004 Olympics 2015 Copa America Banco Imobiliario Barcas SA Belo Horizonte Bom Senso F.C. Brasilerao CDURP CONMEBOL Champions League. Mourinho Complexo do Alemão Copa Libertadores Cupula dos Povos ESPN England FiFA Fan Fest Istanbul 2020 Jogos Militares John Carioca Kaka Manaus McDonald's Obama Olympic Village PPP Paralympics Providencia Recife Russia Salvador Soccer City Taksim Square Tatu-bola Urban Social Forum Vidigal Vila Olimpica War World Cup Xaracana attendance figures cities corrupcao drugs estadios football frangueiro futebol mafia planejamento urbano police repression porn privitization reforms shock doctrine taxes 201 2010 Elections 2010 Vancouver Olypmics 2013 2018 World Cup 2030 Argentina / Uruguay ABRAJI AGENCO ANPUR ANT-SP Amazonia Ancelmo Gois Andrade Gutierrez Anthony Garotinho Arena Amazonia Arena Pernambucana Athens Atlético Paranaense Avenida das Americas BID Barra de Tijuca Blatter Brasil x Cote d'Iviore Brasileirão 2013 Brasilia Brasilierao Bruno Souza Bus fares COB COI COMLURB CPI CPO Cabral Caixa Economica Canal do Anil Cantagalo Celio de Barros Cesar Maia Chapeu Mangueira Chile 2015 Choque do Ordem Cidade da Copa Class One Powerboat Racing Clint Dempsey Comite Companhia das Docas Copa do Brasil Corinthians Cuiabá Curitiba Dave Zrin David Harvey Der Spiegel Eastwood Edge of Sports Escola Friendenrich Expo Estadio Expo Urbano FGV Fonte Nova Gamboa Garotinho Geostadia Ghana Globo Greek Debt Crisis Greek Olympics HBO Hipoptopoma IMG IPHAN ISL Iniesta Internatinal Football Arena Invictus Istanbul Itaquerao Jacque Rogge Jefferson John Coates Jose Beltrame Julio Grondona Julio Lopes Julio de Lamare Knights Templar Korea Lei Geral da Copa MAR MEX Manchester United Mangabeira Unger Maracanã. Soccerex Marina da Gloria Mexico Milton Santos Molotov Cocktail Mr.Balls Neymar Nicholas Leoz Nilton Santos Olympic Flag Olympic Park Project Oscar Niemeyer Pacaembu Pan American Games Parque Olimpico Pernambuco Plano Popular Plano Popular do Maracana Plano Popular do Maracanã Play the Game Pope Porto Alegre Porto Olimpico Porto Seguro Portuguesa Praca Tiradentes Preview Projeto Morrinho Putin Qatar Quatar 2022 RSA Realengo Regis Fichtner Roberto Dinamite Russia 2018 SETRANS SMH Santa Teresa Santos Sao Raimundo Sargento Pepper Security Cameras Smart City Sochi 2014 South Korea Stormtroopers São Januário São Paulo Teargas Templars Tokyo 2020 Tropa do Elite II Turkey UFRJ/IPPUR URU USA USA! Unidos da Tijuca United States government Urban Age Conference VVIP Via Binário Victory Team Vila Autodromo Vila Cruzeiro Vila do Pan Vilvadao Vivaldao Volta Alice Wasteland Workers' Party World Cup 2018 Xavi Zurich apartments atrazos barrier beer bio-fuels bonde capacities civil society comite popular copa sudamericana crack crime dengue dictatorship estádios favelalógica feira livre fiador flooding freedom of information furos geral graffiti guarda municipal host city agreement identity infrastructure ipanema istoe labor rape riots schedule school shooting security segregation social movements stadium state of exception supervia tear gas ticket prices torcidas organizadas tourism traffic tragedy trash trem-bala velodromo wikileaks xingar