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South Korean province dealing with debt from 2018 Winter Olympics

The South Korean province that hosted the 2018 Winter Olympics is facing “massive debt,” according to a major newspaper in that country.

Gangwon Province has struggled to maintain venues such as the hockey arena, speedskating rink and sliding center that have sat empty since the Games in February, according to Chosun Ilbo.

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Local officials have asked the central government to assume upkeep costs but have reportedly been denied.

Environmentalists, meanwhile, are seeking to have the alpine skiing venue razed and the land returned to its natural, forested state.

“Most of the Olympic legacies have either been demolished or are gathering dust, causing a tremendous amount of disappointment for local residents,” Choi Moon-soon, the Gangwon Province governor, was quoted as saying.

Previous Olympic hosts such as Sochi and Rio de Janeiro have also seen expensive venues go unused and fall into disrepair.

In Los Angeles, where the 2028 Summer Games are scheduled to be held, organizers have vowed that their plan will avoid such problems because it makes use of existing facilities such as the Coliseum and Staples Center.

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