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Los Angeles to Host First Editions of World Urban Games in 2019 and 2021

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Los Angeles won the bidding for the inaugural World Urban Games, an event organized by the Global Assn. of International Sports Federations. Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, L.A. Times owner, agreed to underwrite the five-day event, which will be held in September 2019 in El Segundo. Photo: Global Assn. of International Sports Federations

By Michael Pavitt |

Los Angeles has been announced as the host of the first two editions of the World Urban Games in 2019 and 2021.

The American city saw off competition from Hungary’s capital city Budapest to be named as the host of the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) event.

Four cities had been claimed to have engaged in the initial process.

GAISF chose Los Angeles as the host at their Council meeting here today, claiming the decision had been taken following a “thorough process.”

Los Angeles’ hosting of the second edition will be conditional on the success of next year’s event.

The events come as the city prepares to host the 2028 Summer Olympic Games.

The Games will present up to 700 athletes in seven urban sports.

The programme will include 3×3 basketball, BMX Freestyle, sports climbing bouldering, break dance , freestyle flying disc, parkour, skateboard street and park and roller freestyle.

In addition to these events, an urban sports showcase will feature up to 100 athletes in at least four other disciplines.

A date has yet to be confirmed, but insidethegames understands the Games could take place in September.

This would see the event take place just weeks before the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) World Beach Games, which will be held from October 10 to 15 in San Diego, another Californian city.

The search for a host was launched earlier this year by former GAISF President Patrick Baumann, who died suddenly last month.

GAISF senior vice President Raffaele Chiulli claimed Los Angeles would be an ideal host and make Baumann’s vision a reality.

“The first World Urban Games will be a historic event and we are confident that we couldn’t have a better host than the city of Los Angeles,” Chiulli said.

“Los Angeles is a young, vibrant and creative city which has helped to shape youth culture and the urban sports which are the very heart of the World Urban Games.

“These Games will be a five-day festival combining new-generation sports, music and culture  and Los Angeles promises a huge welcome for the world’s leading urban sports athletes and fans from across the world.

“In awarding the first three editions of the World Urban Games to Los Angeles and with the commitment  of an Organising Committee supported by the Los Angeles Times organisation, we are confident that we have given our new competition the best possible start in life.

“Los Angeles will give it the opportunity to become established, flourish and become a key part of the international sports calendar for many years to come.

“I would like to thank the International Federations who have engaged so enthusiastically with the project and who, along with the city, will be delivering the World Urban Games in just 10 months.

“The World Urban Games project was the vision of our late President Patrick Baumann and his hard-work and positivity are the reason we are in apposition to make today’s announcement.

“Now we are fully focused on working with the city of Los Angeles, the Organizing Committee and International Federations to make Patrick’s vision a reality.”

Organizers plan to stage the event near the Los Angeles International Airport, which would be a “central, compact location” accessible by public transportation.

A purpose-built urban park will be constructed in El Segundo in time for the event.

The park, it is claimed, will ensure sustainability and boost engagement with the local communities.

Patrick Soon-Shiong, chief executive of the Los Angeles Times and chairman and chief executive of NantWorks, will serve as chair of the organising committee.

“We are honoured that the GAISF council chose Los Angeles and we’re excited to bring youth-focused sports competitions to the community,” he said.

“The World Urban Games multi-sport concept brings the Olympic Movement and International Federations into this next generation of sports.

“Together with GAISF and the IOC, we will support the further development of sports programs to highlight the evolving youth sports landscape.”

Republished with permission from insidethegames.biz

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