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Ward 11 Brian's Beat: Olympic Bid Discussion

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Ward 11 official website
On June 20th 2016, Council approved exploring what a Calgary bid would look like. The steps are that we let the Canada Olympic Committee (COC) know of the City of Calgary’s desire to host the 2026 Winter Olympic Games. Then, over the next 14 months through an exploration phase, the City will flesh out what a bid would look like. Part of that work is a full survey and assessment of our entire existing sports infrastructure.
Then, by Sept 2017, the COC has to decide whether we are putting in a country bid to the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and which city will be representing Canada in that bid. The IOC then will finally decide on the host city in July 2019.
The exploration phase is expected to cost up to $5M, of which the committee is looking for outside sponsorship. So, this money should not come solely from the City of Calgary.
The facility assessment work that the committee is going to do is work that needed doing anyway, and would have cost the city about $2.5Million to complete.
I think the Olympic Bid is worth exploring for a number of reasons:
·         The IOC is in a reform mode right now to eliminate the corruption that has been inherent and historical
·         The IOC is way more open now in the process for selecting host cities
·         As well, there is a strong emphasis by the IOC on sustainability and ability to use existing infrastructure rather than building new glittering stadia and projects
·         The 1988 legacy for Calgary was very strong and I would expect a stronger legacy coming out of a 2026 Olympics for us.

So, with all that considered, and with the benefits for the City of Calgary of even just doing the exploratory stage, I supported it.
It is important to note that we as a City, will never undertake the Olympics unless all orders of government are participating and supporting it. We will know that by Sept 2017.
Read the FAQs from the Calgary Sport Tourism Authority

This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.

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