The Tokyo International Forum is an exhibition center that consists of eight exhibition halls, a spacious lobby, as well as a number of shops and restaurants. The building has 14 floors, three of which are below the ground floor. The Tokyo International Forum is located between Tokyo and Yurakucho stations.
The Tokyo International Forum was designed by the South American architect Rafael Vignoli and built in 1996. The building consists of two sections connected by several underground and aboveground glazed passages. One of the sections is a glazed atrium 210 meters long, reminiscent of the bottom of a ship. Its height sits at 60 meters and the inner square is paved with granite slabs. The Tokyo International Forum is quite grand - its total area is 3 hectares, and the glass surface of the atrium is 20,000 square meters. On the ground floor lies a historical tribute - a bronze monument to Ota Dokan Sukenaga, the founder of Edo castle.
The venue is used for conventions, art exhibitions and all sorts of events. At the 2020 Olympic Games, it will host weightlifting and Paralympic Games powerlifting. The competitions will take place in the firum's largest hall with a capacity of 5000 spectators.
Weightlifting is an Olympic sport based on performing exercises to lift a weighted bar above the head. Weightlifting competitions exist since ancient times. The earliest references to such contests are from Ancient Egypt, China and Greece. In its modern form this sport was formed by the middle of the 19th century. The first official competitions were held in the USA during the 1860s and then in the in Europe. The first official World Championship was held in 1898 in Vienna. Weightlifting has been part of the Olympic Games since 1896. Currently, the strongest countries in weightlifting are China, North Korea, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Bulgaria.
The Tokyo International Forum is located a short walking distance from many places of interest like Tokyo Station, Mitsubishi Ichidokan Art Museum, the Imperial Theatre, the Imperial Palace and Imperial East Gardens.