Bids For the 2024 Olympic Games Pinpoint Legacy, Transportation As Opportunities Gleaned From Rio 2016

LA 2024 Bid Chief Casey Wasserman at Rio 2016 (GamesBids Photo)

LA 2024 Bid Chief Casey Wasserman at Rio 2016 (GamesBids Photo)

Technical delegations from bids for the 2024 Olympic Games – Budapest, Los Angeles, Paris and Rome – attended the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Observers Program at the Rio Games and have already pinpointed key opportunities learned from their experiences.

With the opportunity to meet with organizing committees, international federations and IOC staff in 35 workshops over 130 hours – the experience was considered constructive.

Rome took focus on the legacy that will remain in Rio following the Games, the new light rail transit and other transportation improvements.  The bids also discussed, in more detail, London 2012 legacy through a dedicated workshop by the London Legacy Development Corporation.

Diana Bianchedi, General Coordinator of Rome 2024 and a gold medalist said,  “we come back from Rio with relevant information and with an important awareness.  The feedback we received from the IOC was once again very positive, we now look forward to the meeting on the project with the City Council and the Mayor of Rome with more issues to be shared and discussed”.

Rome’s new Mayor, Virginia Raggi, ran an election campaign in opposition of the bid and she has said that in October, she will decide whether the campaign to host the Games will receive her approval to continue.

Some of the topics discussed during the observer program included sustainability, organization, budget, logistics, territory education, engagement, marketing legacy, facilities, transportation, tourism, security, public involvement, athletes experience and spectators.

With Rome’s struggling economy, Raggi’s desire to focus funds on fundamental municipal projects instead of the Olympic Games mimics the mood that many Cariocas had.  But Rome 2024 Head of the Communication Fabio Guadagnini sees the Rio experience as an opportunity for Italy.

“The Rio 2016 Committee has worked hard on the engagement and sustainability projects. The economic hardship has become an aggregation factor between all organizations, sport, territory, social, always in the interest of the city and the country,” he said.

“We will take into account the lessons learnt for the Rome 2024 project that is led by the principles of sustainability and legacy.”

Los Angeles found opportunities in Rio that the Southern California destination can expand upon including stunning backdrops and “Broadening Horizons.”

Majlinda Kelmendi from Kosovo won her nation’s first-ever medal, a Gold one, in Women's Judo (GamesBids Photo)

Majlinda Kelmendi from Kosovo won her nation’s first-ever medal, a Gold one, in Women’s Judo (GamesBids Photo)

Citing nations that won their first Olympic medals ever while competing in Brazil and with a goal to continuing that trend, an L.A. statement said “LA 2024’s Games Plan will incorporate unprecedented access to top training facilities used by many 2016 Olympians from around the world, so athletes and staff from every nation will have their best chance to succeed.”

L.A. also recognized traffic woes that hampered the success of Rio’s Games and offered up existing plans for an $88 billion mass transit overhaul and the experience and strategies that helped keep athletes and spectators moving quickly between venues at the 1984 Olympic Games.

Bid Chief Casey Wassermen said “LA 2024’s low-risk, sustainable venue plan means we can spend our time and resources on building on the very best of Rio 2016. If we are given the honor of being elected hosts, LA 2024 will have a unique opportunity to spend seven years focusing on innovation and the kind of ‘last mile’ preparations which elevate the Games-time experience to the Olympic-class of the future for every single stakeholder.”

Budapest 2024 Bid Chief Balázs Fürjes explained that his team was in Rio to listen carefully.

He told “I’m grateful for them for sharing their experience because we are here in Rio to ask questions:  What is important?  What would make a better Olympic Games in a city like Budapest?”

The Bid Evaluation Commission will travel to the candidate cities for site inspections in April and May.  The IOC will elect the 2024 host city September 13, 2017 in Lima, Peru.