Olympic-related personnel to be provided with designated taxis: Organizing Committee
Published: Dec 11, 2021 12:45 AM
Beijing Winter Olympics

Beijing Winter Olympics

Beijing Winter Olympics-related personnel will not be allowed to use the city's public transport, but can only travel by transport within the closed loop, Zhao Tong'an, deputy director of the Beijing Winter Olympic Organizing Committee's transport department, said at a press conference on Friday.

He noted that physical separation will be applied between seats in all closed-loop management vehicles, and that the closed-loop management shuttles will hold no more than 50 percent of their capacity.

In addition to the shuttle buses, the Organizing Committee will also offer the option of taxis for Olympics-related personnel. Between January 4 and March 16, they will be able to use the Olympic-specific taxi service.

"The Olympic taxi service is a paid transportation service for people within the closed loop, and the vehicles can only operate within the Olympic closed loop venues," Zhao explained. "The service is available 24 hours a day in all three competition areas, and athletes can book a taxi online."

As the Beijing Winter Olympic Games are held in three competition areas - Beijing, its Yanqing district and neighboring Zhangjiakou in Hebei Province - some people will travel via high-speed rail from Beijing to Zhangjiakou, which is 180 kilometers away. In terms of high-speed rail transportation, Beijing will set up special carriages, special access to stations and special waiting areas for Olympics-related personnel under closed-loop management.

As the Winter Olympics and Winter Paralympics will be held at the same time as the Spring Festival, the "two sessions" and other major events, transportation will be a challenge for the city, said Zhao.

In response, Beijing will set up a dedicated lane for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games and the Winter Paralympic Games. The construction of related projects will be completed by December 31. 

From January 21 to March 16, 2022, Beijing will officially open the Olympic lanes and is committed to making sure it does not affect the city's basic traffic flow.

The Organizing Committee has designated a total of 4,090 vehicles of various types for Olympics-related transportation, of which all the small vehicles use new energy and clean energy.

In terms of Olympic catering services, the Organizing Committee has vowed to respect and meet the needs of different countries and regions, different religious beliefs and national habits.

"We will reasonably set the ratio of Chinese, Western and Asian cuisines to develop and form a unique and comprehensive 'Winter Olympics menu,'" Yu Debin, head of the Games Service Department of the Beijing Winter Olympic Organizing Committee, said on Friday.

"Meals that leave a memory for people must be culturally distinctive. I have met athletes who came to the Beijing Summer Olympics in 2008, and they still remember the Beijing duck they ate back then," Yu said. 

He pointed out that the Winter Olympic meals will still include many Chinese specialties to promote traditional Chinese food culture. "For example, we have prepared spring rolls, and soup dumplings for the Lantern Festival."

The committee has also developed a detailed epidemic prevention and control program, including the requirement that venue restaurants have a "one-meter line," configure non-contact temperature measurement equipment, and deploy proper hand disinfection devices. 

"We have developed an epidemic prevention system and catering disinfection norms for catering areas, in order to provide guidance for emergencies and to minimize the risk of epidemic transmission," Yu said.