The “creativity and strong legacy focus” of both Los Angeles and Paris has been praised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Evaluation Commission for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games after they completed an initial two-day review.
Formal inspections of the two cities are due to take place in May.
“The Commission’s work is just beginning, but it is already clear that both candidates have embraced the spirit of Olympic Agenda 2020,” Patrick Baumann, the Swiss IOC member who replaced Frankie Fredericks as chair of the Evaluation Commission earlier this month, said.
“Both proposals incorporate well-known locations in these two great cities, and would deliver an excellent experience for athletes, spectators and other Games participants.
“We are looking forward to taking a closer look at these two strong candidates during our site visits, to see in more detail how these well-developed plans would come to life at Games time and leave sustainable legacies.”
Paris today unveiled a “detailed legacy vision” designed to take effect regardless of whether the bid is successful.
They claim to have three broad aims: ensuring a “better, more inclusive society through sport,” “infrastructure regeneration” and a “Games for the environment.”
“From the beginning of our bid, our ambition has been to offer a project that will leave a sustainable legacy for the 2024 generations, in France and worldwide,” said Paris 2024 co-chairman Tony Estanguet.
“We want our Games to be first and foremost a legacy for the future.
“Organizing the Olympic and Paralympic Games would enable us to use sport as a vehicle for social change, by developing sports facilities nationwide and by embedding Olympic values in the next generation of athletes.”
Los Angeles 2024’s legacy is focusing more on intangible factors such as the “financial responsibility” of a bid with no new venues.
They claim their bid offers the “lowest-risk and truly sustainable solution for the future of the Olympic Movement in 2024 and beyond.”
“The world is changing, and so are the needs of the Olympic and Paralympic Movements,” said Los Angeles 2024 chairman Casey Wasserman.
“This calls for new thinking, and that is precisely what the diverse group of 117 leaders and innovators on LA 2024’s Board of Directors brings to LA’s bid for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“LA 2024’s low-risk proposal has earned 88 per cent public support for the Games and does not require building any new permanent venues.
“That means that instead of focusing on complex and costly construction projects, we can dedicate this group’s incredible energy and creativity to connecting the Games to the future.”
More members of Los Angeles’ Board of Directors were also unveiled today.
Latest names include New Zealand’s windsurfer turned former IOC Athletes’ Commission member Barbara Kendall and 21st Century Fox chief executive, James Murdoch.
Others include Spanish-born Plácido Domingo, the opera singer who is conductor and general director of LA Opera, and Walt Disney Company chairman and chief executive, Bob Iger.
The IOC Evaluation Commission are due to visit the Californian city from May 10 to 12 before they travel to the French capital for an inspection between May 14 and 16.
They will then report to the whole IOC membership at a Candidate City briefing, scheduled to take place in Lausanne on July 11 and 12.
A choice is then expected to be made between the two at the IOC Session in Lima on September 13.
It is ultimately possible, however, that both cities will be awarded a Games.
An IOC Working Group chaired by the body’s four vice-presidents is currently considering the possibility of awarding both the 2024 and 2028 editions in the Peruvian capital.
Both Los Angeles and Paris, though, are publicly insisting that they are only interested in the earlier edition.
The cities are the only candidates for 2024 in what was originally a five-horse race before the withdrawal of Hamburg, Rome and Budapest.
Fredericks was replaced by Baumann after the Namibian was accused of accepting suspicious payment allegations before Rio de Janeiro were awarded the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
He denies any wrongdoing but has stepped aside from sporting responsibilities as an investigation progresses.
By Nick Butler
Republished with permission from insidethegames.biz.