When you have 5,600 credentialed media running around a place with backpacks and laptops and television cameras for 17 days, you better have ample space.

Try four floors and more than 670,000 square feet worth.

That's how large the Main Press Center is in Beijing, the place where journalists have gathered daily to report and write and conduct interviews and, if you're part of the Italian media, hold wild celebrations while hugging and kissing each other any time an athlete from your nation is shown on television.

There is a bank, a post office, a gym, a barbershop, a library, two cell phone company stores, a coffee shop, a transportation center, a gift shop, an Internet service department, a language help desk, a pharmacy, a medical station, a travel agency, locker rooms, showers and 972 work stations in the press room.

And that's just on the main floor.

The basement comprises a dining hall, where Western journalists have helped McDonald's stock rise several points in the past few weeks.

There is more than 20,000 square feet of rental space and 110 private offices. The IOC sets up camp here. So does the USOC and organizing committees from 22 nations.

Yep, big enough.


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