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Rio Olympic athletics venue set to reopen

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Rio de Janeiro, Jan 10 : Rio de Janeiro's Olympic athletics stadium will reopen next month, almost two years after being closed on safety concerns.

The Joao Havelange Stadium, known locally as the Engenhao, was shut in March 2013 after an independent engineer's report showed the venue's roof could collapse due to structural problems, reports Xinhua.

Brazilian football club Botafogo, who have a long-term tenancy agreement at the venue, will officially reopen the stadium in a match against Boavista Feb 1.

The 45,000-seat venue will initially have its capacity limited to 20,000 spectators but is expected to be fully opened by March.

Meanwhile, Botafogo officials have requested local government permission to rename the stadium after their former player Nilton Santos.

The 1958 World Cup winner died in 2013 aged 88.

The Engenhao, which will host track and field events during the 2016 Olympics, will have its capacity increased to 60,000 ahead of the Games. 

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