The world-class Gelora Bung Karno sports complex, a legacy of Indonesia’s founding father Sukarno, has been renovated for the upcoming Asian Games, which will be cohosted by Jakarta and Palembang, South Sumatra. The Jakarta Post sports correspondent Ramadani Saputra has taken a look at the history of the sports complex, from its inauguration to what it looks like today after having gone through a US$205 million renovation.

by Ramadani Saputra

In many parts of the world, sports stadiums signify the greatness of a country. Spain boasts Camp Nou. Built in the 1950s to seat 99,000, it is Europe’s largest stadium. China has the 80,000-seat Beijing National Stadium, also known as the Bird’s Nest for its unique design. As the largest nation in Southeast Asia, Indonesia is proud to have the newly revamped Gelora Bung Karno sports complex. Its main stadium has a capacity of 76,000 (formerly 88,000). AS Roma, PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United, Arsenal, AC Milan and Bayern Munich are some of the world’s biggest clubs that have played at the stadium throughout the decades. Located at the prime site of Senayan, Central Jakarta, the 120-hectare sports facility was built in the 1960s when Indonesia had the honor of playing host to the fourth edition of the multisport Asian Games in 1962, which involved 17 nations. The...