On Thursday Lillehammer Norway submitted its plan to host the inaugeral Youth Winter Olympic Games in 2012, officially joining the race alongside three other bids.
Due to Lillehammer’s successful hosting of the 1994 Winter Olympic Games and numerous other International sports events – only the curling venue will need to be constructed from scratch. Other sports will utilize pre-exisitng venues requiring temporary or permanent upgrades.
The Norwegian Olympic Committee estimates the Games will cost USD$49 million, of which the Norwegian federal government will contribute $19 million and the balance will be funded by the IOC and sponsors.
The Games would occur between February 24 and March 4, 2012 in a compact venue arrangement with very little environmental impact.
Bid planners hope that if successful, Lillehammer’s bid will result in continued growth of winter sports in Norway and will provide a new means of communication among youth with a newly developed digital information platform.
According to bid documents a Lillehammer Games “…will be the catalyst for innovative communication – on youth’s terms and understanding – that will transcend cultural, social, political and geographical borders.”
The IOC will choose a short list in August and announce the winner of the postal vote among IOC members in December.