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Potential bid for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games

The City of Calgary has contracted the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee (CBEC) to conduct a feasibility study into whether The City should participate in the formal bid process with the International Olympic Committee to host the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Participating in the Winter Games has the potential to reap lasting benefits for our city. Before making this decision, it’s important to determine if the benefits outweigh the costs.

CBEC’s role is to explore and weigh all factors and make a recommendation to Calgary City Council by July 2017. Council will make the decision on whether to proceed with a formal bid.


May 16, 2017

CBEC is releasing the results of a formal quantitative survey that was launched in an effort to understand public opinions surrounding a potential 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games bid. Almost 2,000 respondents from Calgary, Canmore, Banff and Cochrane were surveyed via telephone and online, and asked a series of questions about a potential 2026 OPWG bid.

The research was conducted by Stone-Olafson, CBEC’s official research partner for the feasibility study. Live interviewers used Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI) technologies as well as an online platform to conduct the surveys and collect data between March 6-19, 2017.

For more information, please see our media release.

May 1, 2017

On May 1, CBEC released an interim report which provides a preview of their work to-date and a report to the community which introduces some new concepts and insights into the committee's progress. CBEC’s Board is structured using five subcommittees to investigate the five critical aspects of the bid exploration including: 

  • Master facilities planning
  • Public engagement and community impact
  • Government and stakeholder relations
  • Security and risk
  • Finance and investment

As this report is an interim draft, not all sections have been fully developed and conclusions are still being determined. Administration will present the final report and recommendation to Council in July 2017.

Recent and upcoming reports

Citizens can have a say in Calgary's bid decision

CBEC has launched a new online questionnaire for citizens to provide input on Calgary’s potential bid. For more information, visit CBEC's website.

CBEC and its board

CBEC is an arm’s length organization that will weigh all factors to make an objective recommendation to Council. Led by former police Chief Rick Hanson, the board is comprised of members of the public who have extensive expertise and key attributes to support the Committee’s mandate, and who represent the diversity of Calgary.

Placing the task of determining the recommendation in this arm’s length organization will ensure the recommendation is objective and reflects the best decision for Calgary. CBEC General Manager Brian Hahn will oversee the process to arrive at a recommendation.

What’s the difference between a feasibility study and an actual bid?

The feasibility study ensures due diligence is done on whether or not to proceed with a formal bid before we invest further funds and time. It will assess how we can maximize the use of existing facilities and achieve other City priorities. The plan will provide a detailed analysis of capital and operating costs for hosting the Games, and the potential level of investment required by the three orders of government.

If City Council decides not to proceed with a bid, the findings will provide us with a comprehensive understanding of current city infrastructure and needs. This is valuable information on the investment required to upgrade Calgary’s legacy facilities, and maintain our competitive edge as a world-class leader in the sport development industry.

History of the bid exploration process:

In June 2016, City Council accepted a recommendation from the Calgary Sport Tourism Authority (CSTA)to form and fund a bid exploration committee. Council also authorized up to $5M from the fiscal sustainability reserve to conduct the study. The report and the media release are available online. 

In September 2016, the City of Calgary announced the membership and governance of the newly formed Calgary Bid Exploration Committee. The report and media release are available online.


Mayor Naheed Nenshi, City of Calgary: "Calgarians embrace the Olympic values and live the Olympic spirit. We believe Calgary has the potential to be a strong and natural contender to repeat as host of the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games. However, there are lots of hard questions that must be answered so we can make an informed decision about whether or not Calgarians, as a community, want to bid for the games."

Doug Mitchell, Chair of CSTA: “We believe this is an opportunity to sustain and grow Calgary’s capacity as a world-class sport hub, grow our economy, create jobs, and provide a global showcase for Calgary’s arts and culture community. It would be an honour to pass the torch of Olympic civic pride and legacy to a new generation of Calgarians.”