HASH(0xb3e970)

LA, Paris share 2024 plans with Olympic leaders

LA, Paris share 2024 plans with Olympic leaders

AARHUS, Denmark — The two bid cities in the 2024 Olympic race addressed voters and sports leaders on Tuesday. Only one talked about “the elephant in the room.”

That is a possible double vote IOC President Thomas Bach has repeatedly hinted at, which could give Los Angeles and Paris either the 2024 or 2028 rights in September.

“We believe that the ’24-’28 conversation makes a lot of sense,” LA bid chairman Casey Wasserman told an audience of Olympic stakeholders, “and it’s fortunate that the IOC has two great cities to consider.”

Minutes later, Paris officials went on stage and focused on winning a contest that is still only about 2024. For now.

“We thought it was obvious to talk about,” Wasserman told reporters after both teams completed 10-minute presentations that both overran.

Still, LA is not offering to stand aside to let Paris have 2024 — exactly 100 years after the French capital last hosted the Olympics — and willingly take a hosting duty 11 years away.

Citing Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo as a good friend, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti told reporters that the cities could start as “friends not competitors” if the IOC formally starts talks to open up the 2024 rules to include 2028.

Hidalgo got her shots in at LA earlier as both teams traded pointed barbs on stage that stayed within the IOC rules of courtesy and not criticizing an opponent.

The Olympics were “more than just a branch of show business,” Hidalgo said, switching from French to English to make sure LA’s Hollywood-backed bid got the hint.

“Our bid is not a government project with all the risk and uncertainty that that implies,” Wasserman said, promoting LA’s privately-funded project against Paris’ need for taxpayer cash to meet 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) of spending on new venues and buildings.

That dug at fresh IOC scars from tangling with multiple government layers in Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo, the 2016 and 2020 hosts where bidding budgets were hit hard by reality.

LA targeted a perceived Paris weak spot in plans to build an athletes village from scratch. Describing LA’s planned village — UCLA student residences — as “more like a resort than a college campus,” bid CEO Gene Sykes said this “takes a huge risk off the table, for all of us.”

Paris’ boast of “quick reliable transport based on a realistic and tested plan,” struck back at LA’s image as a car-choked city.

Hidalgo also trumpeted the Paris bid’s environmental credentials, evoking the global climate accord that was forged in the city during the Obama administration, yet is little respected by the current U.S. president.

“We are a team you can trust,” was Paris bid co-chairman Tony Estanguet’s message to the audience of Summer Games sports federations.

Tuesday’s event at an annual conference of Olympic officials, with about 20 IOC members present, was the first of three official campaign events this year.

The next is at a meeting for the full IOC membership on July 11-12 to hear detailed technical analysis of the cities’ hosting projects. It follows a two-day IOC executive board meeting which will take a report from Bach’s four vice-presidents who he has asked to advise on staging a double vote to avoid losing either coveted city.

The race is set to be decided at the annual IOC session scheduled for Sept. 13 in Lima, Peru.

Bach did not attend the city presentations, though he met with both mayors on Monday.

Earlier Tuesday, he praised both bids.

“We have two excellent bids which are embracing Olympic Agenda 2020 by making use of many existing facilities, by having a sustainable project, by having very low infrastructure investments compared to previous bids,” Bach told The Associated Press.

Asked if the contest could yet have two winners, the IOC head chuckled before adding: “We’ll see.”

Graham Dunbar, The Associated Press

Just Posted

Thornhill Boil Water Advisory rescinded

Residents are asked to flush their water pipes, clean coffee makers and other appliances

Contractors dig into construction of union office in Terrace

Traffic has been detoured on Kalum St. by Lazelle and Park Ave. for work on the BCGEU office

Baby bear captured on Kalum St.

Bear cub had been seen in area backyards for several days

Public asked to be on lookout for bear cub

Norhtern Lights Animal Shelter on its way here to capture baby bruin in Scott Avenue area.

Searchers rush to find missing hikers with one-year-old child

Family out overnight in cold near Watson Lake

Terrace River Kings overcome Williams Lake Stampeders 6-5

It was a back-and-forth game, played into second overtime before the team secured the win

VIDEO: Oprah Winfrey and a celebrities attend ‘B.C. Miracle Concert’

Fundraiser featured Foster, Steven Tyler, The Tenors, Matteo Bocelli, Laura Bretan, Carly Rae Jepsen

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Dorsett has 2 goals, assist in Canucks’ 4-2 win over Sabres

‘It was a real good hockey game by our group,’ Canucks coach Travis Green said.

Berry disappointed: Bear tries to eat fake fruit on woman’s door wreath

A Winnipeg woman has taken her berry-embellished wreath down, after a hungry bear visited her porch

Most Read