Madrid 2016 Awaits IOC Commission

The International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Evaluation Commission is arriving in Madrid Monday to inspect the city’s bid for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, and bid leaders are being realistic as to what they should expect to hear from the IOC.

The Associated Press reports IOC chairwoman Nawal el Moutawakel said the evaluation team was “impressed” with each of the other three bid cities – Chicago, Tokyo and Rio de Janeiro – and Madrid 2016 head Mercedes Coghen said, “I’m not expecting to hear anything different because they are very well mannered people. All four cities have great projects, and I think that seems to be a very smart way of summing it up”.

Coghen told the Associated Press she believes Madrid could have one advantage for the “tired” inspectors after their inspections of the other three bid cities. She said they are already familiar with Madrid’s bid. “The city has changed, the project has changed, and we want to show this. But the advantage is that for some things they’ll have to ask questions. There are fewer surprises. And the previous process was very concrete so they’ll arrive with that in mind”.

Madrid 2016 believes another plus is that 77 per cent of the city’s installations have already been constructed and the majority of the competition venues will be within the Olympic Village, just on the outskirts of the city centre.

Coghen said Monday’s welcome would be low-key before the real evaluation process begins Tuesday when IOC inspectors will be able to ask questions on all aspects of the bid.

Wednesday and Thursday the team will inspect the venues and will travel on hybrid buses which are in line with Madrid’s promise to hold a green games, reports the Associated Press. But bid organizers won’t use the metro with a strike expected this week.

King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia, who are leading Madrid’s delegation at the vote October 2 in Copenhagen, will host a lunch Friday, the last day of the visit.