The IOC has never before assigned two editions of its showpiece event at once and the move was formally ratified when no objections were raised at the IOC Session in Lima, Peru yesterday (Wednesday). The decision, foregoing the traditional dramatic conclusion of a voting process for the hosting rights, ends what has been a troubled bidding process for the summer Olympics.
The two bids have been fascinating – both in their similarities and differences. Both have embraced Olympic Agenda 2020, particularly in the way they’re planning to use a record-breaking number of existing and temporary facilities.
Budapest became the third city to exit the bidding process for the 2024 Games earlier this year, leaving just Los Angeles and Paris in contention. A referendum also put paid to the German city of Hamburg’s ambitions, while Rome exited the race last year amid financial concerns. Boston’s initial American bid was replaced by that of Los Angeles.
The exit of Budapest led to the idea of a Tripartite Agreement between the IOC, Paris and Los Angeles after a working group of IOC vice-presidents studied the possibility of a double allocation of the 2024 and 2028 Games.
The working group was set up in March with IOC officials keen to ensure there was no loser in a 2024 race that was left with two strong bids. The path was smoothed to Wednesday’s announcement when the IOC in July reached an outline host city agreement with the Los Angeles bid committee for the US city to host the 2028 Olympics, leaving Paris to take the 2024 Games.
Speaking yesterday, Bach said: “This historic double allocation is a ‘win-win-win’ situation for the city of Paris, the city of Los Angeles and the IOC. It is hard to imagine something better. Ensuring the stability of the Olympic Games for the athletes of the world for the next 11 years is something extraordinary.
“These are two great cities from two great countries with a great Olympic history. Both cities are very enthusiastic about the Games and are promoting the Olympic spirit in a fantastic way.”
Paris, which has hosted the summer Olympics on two previous occasions, entered the 2024 Games race with the emotive target of an event which would mark the centenary of its last staging in the French capital. Having been beaten in previous efforts to land the 1992, 2008 and 2012 Games, Paris has outlined a 2024 Games budget of €6.8bn ($8.1bn).
Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, said: “With this team, I am very proud and moved to bring the Games back to Paris. At the heart of these Games, we will place young people, who represent our present, our hope and our pride.”