Los Angeles pursues 2024 Olympics
Los Angeles, March 9 (IANS): Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa wrote a letter expressing “enthusiastic interest” in bidding for the 2024 Olympics, the US Olympic Committee (USOC) revealed.
Los Angeles, the host city of 1932 and 1984 Games, wants to bring the Olympics back to southern California, reports Xinhua.
The USOC is deciding whether to bid for the 2024 Games and recently sent a letter to 35 of America’s largest cities to gauge interest. USOC CEO Scott Blackmun said the federation has received a handful of responses and he is pleased with how the process is going.
He said he was “delighted” Los Angeles has expressed interest. “Obviously, LA can handle the Games,” Blackmun said Friday after the USOC’s quarterly board meeting.
The 1984 Los Angeles Games were considered a triumph, coming at a time when the US and Soviet Union were trading boycotts, when the Games were largely viewed as money-losing propositions and when cities were reluctant to try for them as Tehran was the only other city that expressed any interest in hosting the 1984 Games.
But Los Angeles lost out to Chicago in the domestic bid process the USOC held to choose its 2016 candidate. That was a lengthy, costly, somewhat unwieldy affair that Blackmun said will not be repeated if the USOC decides to try for the 2024 Games.
Los Angeles would be vying to join London as the only three-time hosts. Among those backing a Los Angeles bid include actor Tom Hanks, Walt Disney chair Robert Iger and Magic Johnson.
Leaders in Chicago, which spent around $10 million during the domestic bid process that eventually led to its last-place finish in the 2016 voting, have said they don’t intend to try again.
The United States last hosted the Summer Olympics in 1996 in Atlanta. Salt Lake City hosted the last Winter Games in 2002. Candidates for the 2024 Games must declare themselves by 2015, with the Games awarded in 2017. Blackmun said the USOC will decide in late 2014 whether to field a candidate for 2024.