2016 Olympics logo unveiling New Year's Eve in Rio

The logo for the 2016 Olympics will be unveiled at Rio's traditional New Year's celebrations.

It will be shown just moments before the fireworks at Copacabana beach go off at midnight on Friday. The logo will be projected on a huge screen on the sand.

Local officials and members of the International Olympic Committee will be at Copacabana to witness the event, along with nearly two million tourists and Rio residents expected for the New Year's Eve party at the famous beach, according to authorities.

Rio won the right in 2009 to host the 2016 Olympics, beating Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago. The Rio Games will be the first in South America.

Olympic organizers have said the Rio 2016 brand was created to reflect the city's culture and represent its natural wonders and joyful residents. They said the logo was designed based on four pillars: contagious energy, harmonious diversity, exuberant nature and Olympic spirit.

Nearly 140 agencies participated in the process to design the logo and only eight made it into the final phase. A multidisciplinary team of 15 national and international members of Rio 2016's organizing committee made the final decision a few months ago.

IOC President Jacques Rogge made his first visit to Rio since the Pan American Games in 2007. He's taking a close look at how the city has been preparing for the games.

He was expected to visit a local slum and construction sites of a tunnel and a subway line on Thursday. He helped lay the cornerstone for the future Olympic and Paralympic Village on Wednesday. He also was present at the signing of an agreement for the construction of the Olympic Park, where 19 facilities will be located.

Rogge said he's liked what he has seen so far. Local authorities and members of the IOC coordination commission have had planning sessions throughout the week.

"I see the preparation for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games is going extremely well," he said.

Rio Gov. Sergio Cabral said the lack of airport infrastructure remains the greatest obstacle in preparations for the games, but downplayed concerns it will remain a problem when the event begins in six years.

Rogge called for local authorities to avoid building venues that may not be of use after the games.

"The Olympic Games are an opportunity for a city, and even a continent, to think of its future," Rogge said.


Associated Writer Tales Azzoni in Sao Paulo contributed to this report.