Rio Faces Olympic-Size Doubts About Its Preparations for the 2016 Games

By: Samantha Finch

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As the days countdown to the 2016 Olympics, everyone is watching to see if Rio will be ready. Photo Credit: Samantha Finch

As our countdown continues to the release the Pace Brazil Documentary “Green vs. Gold,” so does the timer in Brazil. With Brazil struggling just to finish preparations for the 2014 World Cup next month, is it even possible to consider that the country will be ready for the Olympics?

In a recent New York Times article, John Coates, a member of the International Olympic Committee, said that Rio’s effort to prepare for the 2016 Olympics is the “worst I have experienced.”

When it was announced on October 2, 2009 that Rio de Janeiro, a city that has risen through the power ranks over the past few decades, was selected by the Olympic Committee to host the 2016 summer games — beating out Chicago, Tokyo, and Madrid — the country erupted with joy.

But concerns have built for months, both inside and outside Brazil, about the status and of Rio’s sprawling, multi-billion-dollar Olympic plan. Continue reading

Day 8: The View from Above

A collection of photographs from #PaceBrazil’s hike through the favelas and tour of the famous Christ Statue in Rio De Janeiro. Contributing Photographers: Samantha Finch

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Favela Living, Step by Step

By Charles Cooper

After days of travel on buses and boats, on our final full day in Brazil the Pace filmmaking team, along with Prof. Claudia Green and her business students, got to explore Vidigal, one of Rio’s soaring hillside favelas (informal urban settlements), the way countless residents do – step by step by dizzying step.

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The view overlooking one of Rio’s largest favelas, Vidigal. Photo Credit: Samantha Finch

Our guide there was Theresa Williamson, the head of Catalytic Communities, a nonprofit group that is trying to help Rio’s several million favela residents press their case for more rights and services. Vidigal has roots dating back 117 years and has gone from being a haphazard, lawless slum to a functioning community, albeit one that still has a significant crime problem, inadequate education and other issues.

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