Imagine the Olympic marathon, beach volleyball and archery competitions staged at Ancient Roman sites such as the avenue leading up to the Colosseum, the Imperial Fora and the Circus Maximus. That’s what Rome’s 2024 Olympic Games bid is proposing as part of its ambitious plans submitted to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Wednesday.
Phase 1 of the bid book was sent off to Lausanne on a USB drive and at home the bid committee held a lavish presentation at Palazzo dei Congressi to showcase its ambitious, yet sustainable project. The ceremony Wednesday was produced by acclaimed Filmmaster Events known for creating ceremonies for high end sports events including the Olympic Games and this year’s ceremonies at Rio 2016.
Rome last hosted the Games in 1960 but was forced to withdraw a 2020 bid after failing to receive approval from the Prime Minister that would have guaranteed financing. The city also lost a 2004 bid to Athens.
Many of the proposed 2024 venues were used for the 1960 Games and 70 per cent of the required venues already exist. New permanent venues proposed include the Athletes’ Village, media center and velodrome.
“The building blocks of our project are total transparency, a low-cost approach and bringing general improvement to the city,” Rome 2024 President Luca Di Montezemolo said.
“If we had the opening ceremony tomorrow at the Stadio Olimpico, we could then host athletics or swimming immediately,
“We’re ready,” he said.
The plan covers a three-cluster bid, one centred around the Stadio Olimpico and surrounding Foro Italico complex for athletics and swimming, the Fiera convention centre indoor sports and Tor Vergata.
“The project that we are presenting today [at IOC headquarters] in Lausanne focuses on a theme: the Italian art of reception, the ability to bring around the world the quality of life of our country. The Olympic Games of 2024 must be the biggest party of sport,” Di Montezemolo proclaimed.
The IOC will analyze the bid book and present a report to the IOC Executive Board in the Spring.
The candidature file part 2 will cover governance, legal and venue funding and is due into the IOC October 7, 2016. The IOC will elect a winner to host the 2024 Games in September 2017.
A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.