Updated 02:56 PM EDT, Tue, Oct 26, 2021

Brazil Wastes $300 Million to Build "Arena Amazonia" Exclusively for the 2014 FIFA World Cup

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John Oliver, host of HBO's Last Week Tonight, aired a segment where he satirically congratulated the Brazilian government for constructing a $300 million soccer stadium in the middle of the Amazon rainforest.

"Okay, that does seem like a waste of money, especially when you consider that that stadium is only going to be used for four World Cup games," Oliver said. "There's also no team in Manaus that can fill it afterwards, at which point it becomes the world's most expensive bird toilet."

The stadium in question is Arena Amazonia in the city of Manaus, which has a population of around 2 million people. Although Manaus is business hub due to its economic free zone, the city is largely only accessible by boat or by plane, which makes transportation to the stadium a major issue.

When constructing the $300 million project, supplies and building materials had to be shipped up the Amazon River in order to make it to the job site, which is located right in the heart of the Brazilian rainforest.

Recent protest movements have centered around the estimated $12 billion that have been spent on wasteful stadium such as Arena Amazonia. Citizens of Brazil are questioning what will happen to the stadiums after all the tourists have gone and the seats are empty, with no teams to fill the void.

Brazil has constructed or remodeled 12 stadiums throughout the country and many will be hard to fill after the World Cup is through.

The Brazilian government and the city of Manaus contend the stadium will continue to be used in revenue producing ways long after the World Cup leaves. Officials cite that Manaus has a soccer team who plays in Brazil's 4th division.

Critics site the fact that Manaus's current soccer team only attracts around 1,000 fans per match, while Arena Amazonia holds 42,000 people within its massive confines.

Concerts and cultural events have also been posed as uses for the stadium, but the frequency of these events seems to scarce to support itself.

The 2016 Olympics will be held in Rio de Janiero, which is roughly a 4-hour flight south of Manaus. It is highly unlikely that an attempt will be made to move events from Rio to a stadium of that distance.

According to the FIFA rules of hosting a World Cup, eight stadiums must be constructed or revamped to host the 64 matches and large tourist crowds. Brazil went above and beyond this number, choosing 12 cities instead of the suggested eight.

The mayor of Rio de Janiero admitted to reporters that "we made a mistake" when choosing 12 host cities.

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