By Paul Osborne

Groundbreaking will begin on a new speed skating ice rink next week as preparations push ahead for the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games ©Getty ImageConstruction on the speed skating rink for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang is due to begin next week following months of controversy over its redesign.

Ground is due to be broken by the end of the month, according to organisers at Pyeongchang 2018, as the last of six new venues finally gets underway.

There had been considerable debate involving the 8,000-seater speed skating rink, which is expected to cost KRW₩131.1 billion ($107.4 million/£70 million), whether to use it as a water park after the end of the Olympics.

Organisers have now revealed the 8,000-seat rink will be demolished come the end of the Olympics as it is more economical to do this rather than provide follow-up management, according to reports from South Korea.

Speaking at his first press conference since being named President of the Pyeongchang 2018 Organising Committee, Cho Yang-ho made the announcement of the groundbreaking, before confirming that organisers will be working hard with all other parties to accelerate preparations for the Games.

"Successful management of the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games is a national task," said Cho.

"There is no time for confrontation.

"The Government, Gangwon Province and the Organising Committee will form a trio to accelerate preparations."

The rink is due completed in January 2017 and a test event scheduled for the following month.

It is one of the four new ice rinks that will be built for the Pyeongchang Games.

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