Originally created 05/05/04

IOC: no date set for arches to be moved onto roof



ATHENS, Greece -- The International Olympic Committee doesn't have a specific date for the installation of the steel-and-glass roof arches over the main Olympic stadium.

But the stadium's completion must be done by the end of June to allow time for test events and technical work for the Aug. 13-29 games.

IOC spokeswoman Giselle Davies said Tuesday officials will meet with the government during an inspection visit May 10-12.

"The IOC will be in town in one week's time and does not wish to pre-empt any discussion which will take place," Davies said.

The IOC has always said the roof, designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, wasn't necessary to hold the athletic events at the stadium. The group could ask Olympic organizers to call off the work if the deadline is missed.

The arches of the roof were supposed to have been put into place in April, but the procedure was stalled because of bad weather and other delays.

The government has promised the venue - with the roof intact - would be finished by the end of June.

"The works for the gliding of the two arches ... are developing at an especially satisfactory pace, a fact that allows us to be hopeful about the completion of the work at the stadium within the time foreseen," said Fani Palli-Petralia, the deputy culture minister overseeing preparations.

Work inside the stadium already has started, and crews also started planting greenery outside the venue.