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Toronto out, 5 cities meet bid deadline

Posted in Sports

Published on September 18, 2015 with No Comments

The race is on for the 2024 Olympics, a five-city contest pitting four European bids against a two-time host from the United States. The IOC announced the official field of candidates and there were no surprises as the previously declared bidders were all on the list — Budapest, Hungary; Hamburg, Germany; Los Angeles; Paris; and Rome. “We are welcoming five outstanding and highly qualified candidate cities,” International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said. The deadline for submission of entries expired at midnight on Tuesday in Switzerland. Two other potential candidates — Toronto and Baku, Azerbaijan — decided not to bid. The IOC also released the host city contract and other documents setting out the two-year bid process, which has been changed to eliminate the cut-down phase and ensure that all candidates go to the final vote in Lima, Peru, in September 2017. The IOC has been determined to present a healthy number of bids and a strong field for 2024 following the troubled race for the 2022 Winter Games, which was left with only two candidates after four pulled out for financial or political reasons. Beijing defeated Almaty, Kazakhstan, in the IOC vote in July.

“We can really look at a very diverse and creative field,” Bach said. The 2024 contest is the first bid process launched since the adoption of Bach’s “Olympic Agenda 2020” reform program, which seeks to reduce the cost of hosting the games. Among other things, it pushes for maximum use of existing and temporary facilities.

Bach said the five candidates had all “embraced” his program. “Sustainability and legacy are the cornerstones of each candidature,” he said. Bach said the IOC will contribute $1.7 billion US in cash and services to the organizing committee of whichever city is chosen as host. He expressed confidence the city will produce a surplus on its operating budget, which does not cover long-term infrastructure costs. Los Angeles, which hosted the 1932 and 1984 Olympics, and Paris, which staged the games in 1900 and 1924, shape up as early front-runners.


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