Officials in Los Angeles and Paris aren’t making things easy for the International Olympic Committee.
IOC representatives recently toured venues in both cities, which are vying against each other to host the 2024 Summer Olympics. One by one, Boston, Budapest, Hamburg and Rome have dropped their bids, citing cost concerns.
LA’s plan — which does not require the construction of any permanent venues and includes both the Rose Bowl and Memorial Coliseum — wildly impressed Patrick Baumann, chair of the IOC’s evaluation commission.
“The commission members were almost ecstatic about the level of the venues that they’ve found … and that they’ve been able to meet those people that manage those venues,” Baumann told USA Today. “It goes from spectacular venues to impressive venues to mind-blowing venues to incredible venues. That certainly is an incredibly positive thing.
“We’ve seen excellent venues, including legacy venues from the 1932 and 1984 Games,” Baumann continued. “And those venues remind us that smart planning leads to great Olympic legacies. Los Angeles is already a great Olympic city, but after these three days, we now realize that was an understatement.”
But Paris also earned raved reviews from the IOC, whose members visited France after touring Los Angeles.
“We have two candidatures that do not present major risks,” Baumann said at a news conference from Paris. “Both cities have an Olympic tradition, venues ready to use and dedicated teams. They have a totally different historic and cultural background. The two cities have a different vision, and IOC members will have to decide between the two.”
IOC members have until September, when the 2024 host city is expected to be announced.
But a meeting in June could determine whether the sites of the 2024 and 2028 Games will be decided at the same time — with Paris and Los Angeles each hosting one. As the Los Angeles Times reports, “it is widely expected that the two-winner proposal will be recommended and endorsed.”
And since neither city wants to come in second (because 2028 is bound to be viewed as a consolation prize), you can count on both to continue ramping up their campaigns for 2024.