Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2014: #3 – Four European Cities Abandon 2022 Olympic Bids presents the seventh annual Top Ten list of Olympic Bid Stories for 2014. These stories impacted the course of Olympic bids, or the Olympic bid process, and formed interesting plot lines for the year. We’ll run them down from 10th to 1st during the holiday season.

#3 – Four European Cities Abandon 2022 Olympic Bids Top Ten 2014 #3 Top Ten 2014 #3

2014 will be remembered for being the year of un-bidding for the Olympics.

The race for the 2022 Olympic Games started well enough with six cities entering the competition late last year.  But soon, things began to unravel.

In January, Stockholm became the first city with second thoughts, dropping their bid after the ruling party determined there was no need for major winter sport infrastructure investment.

Then in May, Krakow constituents soundly defeated a referendum on the bid forcing the Mayor to immediately cancel the campaign and withdraw.  They didn’t want the financial risk and were put off by the $51 billion (USD) reportedly spent in Sochi for the 2014 Games.

In June, Lviv in Ukraine ended its bid due to what was described as a security crisis resulting from the Russian incursion. 

If you’re counting – that left three bids in the running, but Oslo’s campaign remained on the brink of defeat when a parliamentary coalition party said it would not support the required government financial guarantees.  In October, Oslo’s Mayor withdrew an application for federal funding and dropped the bid when it appeared there would be no government support – and polls showed less than 50% public support.

And then there were two, only Almaty and Beijing remained.

But it’s even worse than that.  Last year Davos, Switzerland and Munich were keen to bid for the 2022 Games but were forced to forgo plans when public support was lacking.

The IOC admitted that the organization was to blame for the total loss of European bids for 2022 – they said that they had failed to communicate effectively.

The four dropped bids is unprecedented for the IOC and it has revealed a public distaste for spending large amounts of capital on Olympic infrastructure – especially among the European nations.  The IOC addressed this issue in December with reforms in Agenda 2020.

Watch or follow us on Twitter or Facebook for Top Bid Stories #2 and #1.

About Robert Livingstone

A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of 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.