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2022: A troubling scenario


stryker
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I gotta believe if all the major European players make it clear they are sitting out 2026, at least one of SLC / Vancouver / Calgary jumps in.

Who else would host if there was no big Euro city and neither the United States or Canada entered?

Especially in terms of SLC, the question is not whether or not they want to jump in. The question is will the USOC want to back that.

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Who else would host if there was no big Euro city and neither the United States or Canada entered?

I think there was a thread mentioning Saporro was interested in bidding for the 2026 WOGs. If Europe and North America for some ungodly reason don't put in a bid, then perhaps South America, New Zealand, or even Africa (namely Morocco) could put in a bid as well.

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I think there was a thread mentioning Saporro was interested in bidding for the 2026 WOGs. If Europe and North America for some ungodly reason don't put in a bid, then perhaps South America, New Zealand, or even Africa (namely Morocco) could put in a bid as well.

Santiago de Chile sounds about decent right now...

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I could still see Beijing splurging when it comes to spending. In addition to the transportation links, they have no infrastructure for the skiing and sliding events not to mention they need a speed skating oval (none of the venues from the 2008 Olympics can accommodate one). So while it's likely to be less than the 50 million spent on Sochi, it's not exactly going to be frugal either. For that matter, Pyeongchang is not exactly being done in a fiscally responsible manner either (building a state-of-the-art speed skating oval that will be demolished after the Olympics in addition to a sliding track that is likely to see little or no use afterwards. All this comes on the heels of the Alpensia resort needing government funds to avoid bankruptcy.

If the IOC really wants to return the Winter Olympics to Europe in 2026, they'll need to show somehow that the reforms of Agenda 2020 are put into use. If not, here's a nightmare scenario even worse than the 2022 race - the Europeans sit out 2026 and Almaty is the only candidate. If it wasn't for the Beijing bid that came out of nowhere, that would be the scenario now.

Pyeongchang is committed to quite a bit unnecessary spending, especially once you consider the additional venue for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies which will be eliminated after the Winter Olympics anyway. They could have just as easily done the ceremony outdoors in the Ski Jumping Stadium, similar to Lillehammer 1994.

One of the viable routes via which this spending spree could end and entice Europeans (and Americans) back into bidding processes for the Winter Olympics would be for a minimum amount of existing venues to be stipulated and capacity requirements to be adjusted. A move away from the bombast of Sochi and towards the humility of Lillehammer, as well as the authenticity of Vancouver/Whistler would certainly be a welcome change. It would also render consultative referendums that are increasingly becoming en vogue in Western countries actually winnable.

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Santiago de Chile sounds about decent right now...

The IOC made a public point of not allowing Doha to propose an Olympics in October to suit their weather. IMHO, it's going to be a long time before the IOC entertains the thought of a Winter Olympics in July or August.

One of the viable routes via which this spending spree could end and entice Europeans (and Americans) back into bidding processes for the Winter Olympics would be for a minimum amount of existing venues to be stipulated and capacity requirements to be adjusted. A move away from the bombast of Sochi and towards the humility of Lillehammer, as well as the authenticity of Vancouver/Whistler would certainly be a welcome change. It would also render consultative referendums that are increasingly becoming en vogue in Western countries actually winnable.

I don't think it's about minimum requirements over existing infrastructure. Oslo had a lot of that and still backed out when there only challengers were 2 cities that the IOC probably wouldn't otherwise consider. What the IOC needs to do is make themselves seem more amenable to working with the host city rather than giving them a list of demands that they're obligated to follow. That's what scared off Oslo. To me, it's less about cities rejecting the Olympics and more than rejecting the IOC. Sure, the excess of Sochi was fresh in everyone's minds, but I think the Oslo folks know that's not what is expected of them, to essentially build a Winter resort from nothing. Unfortunately, we're looking at 3 Olympics in a row like that (although Korea did have some infrastructure in place, in large part due to previous bids). So what they need more than anything is to start to restore their reputation, as if it was that strong in the first place. That's what will get these cities back on board, particularly on the Winter side.

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The IOC made a public point of not allowing Doha to propose an Olympics in October to suit their weather. IMHO, it's going to be a long time before the IOC entertains the thought of a Winter Olympics in July or August.

I don't think it's about minimum requirements over existing infrastructure. Oslo had a lot of that and still backed out when there only challengers were 2 cities that the IOC probably wouldn't otherwise consider. What the IOC needs to do is make themselves seem more amenable to working with the host city rather than giving them a list of demands that they're obligated to follow. That's what scared off Oslo. To me, it's less about cities rejecting the Olympics and more than rejecting the IOC. Sure, the excess of Sochi was fresh in everyone's minds, but I think the Oslo folks know that's not what is expected of them, to essentially build a Winter resort from nothing. Unfortunately, we're looking at 3 Olympics in a row like that (although Korea did have some infrastructure in place, in large part due to previous bids). So what they need more than anything is to start to restore their reputation, as if it was that strong in the first place. That's what will get these cities back on board, particularly on the Winter side.

Well, in terms of Santiago, I was primarily referring to a scenario in which European and North American applicants feel deterred from applying for the Winter Games - which is the only situation in which a bid from South America would come into play.

From a European perspective, I think it's a mixture of distrusting the IOC...which much of the media places into the same category as FIFA when it comes to intransparency, corruption and elitist hobnobbing. In Europe, just like in The Americas, we like nothing more than complaining about "the elites", "the entitled" and "the self-appointed". The IOC's structures seem to militate against that widespread egalitarian belief system: it's self-perpetuating, self-appointed, unaccountable and unelected. In Host Cities, it naturally wields unfettered access and authority, with local (elected) officials having to jump through every hoop to satisfy the Olympic leaders. Add to that the horror stories about overspending (from Montréal, Beijing, Sochi and now Pyeongchang), alongside the absurd fiction that "sport has nothing to do with politics" (look at the minute of silence controversy for the Munich 11 in London as an example) as well as the fact that rarely do the Olympic Games end up bringing any financial benefit to the city itself, and you end up with a cognitive dissonance: an IOC that lives in its own world, unharmed by any of its stuff-ups and the Host Cities which have to shoulder the debt, the inconvenience and increased security risks to its citizens etc...This is not my opinion, but it's the narrative in Europe (and maybe in The Americas as well) - and that's what keeps Host Cities from Europe away from the Winter Olympics.

Agenda 2020 is a good and important first step: but concrete measures aimed at cutting some disciplines and further limiting the number of athletes, as well as lengthening the Olympic Games by a few more days or even a week would probably help in the mid-term. In the long term, though, the IOC will have to reform its structures a bit more, to at least have the semblance of "democracy" in its ranks. Maybe by having term limits (in addition to the existing age limits) for the IOC members and increasing the number of recent athletes or permitting a contingent of IOC delegates to be selected by continental Olympic associations.

The diehard naysayers will never be satisfied, though.

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Agenda 2020 is a good and important first step: but concrete measures aimed at cutting some disciplines and further limiting the number of athletes, as well as lengthening the Olympic Games by a few more days or even a week would probably help in the mid-term. In the long term, though, the IOC will have to reform its structures a bit more, to at least have the semblance of "democracy" in its ranks. Maybe by having term limits (in addition to the existing age limits) for the IOC members and increasing the number of recent athletes or permitting a contingent of IOC delegates to be selected by continental Olympic associations.

The diehard naysayers will never be satisfied, though.

For better or worse, they're not exactly wrong with their concerns and complaints.

There are still cities out there willing to work with the IOC. The USOC clearly wanted to put together a bid. Whether or not Agenda 2020 affected the choice of Boston is debatable. Paris probably would have been there anyway. So would Rome and Hamburg. As much of a mess 2022 is, remains to be seen if that's an anomaly.

Saying that the IOC needs to trim the Olympic program sounds like a smart move in theory. But will the political powers that be allow them to do it right? This is an organization that voted to keep modern pentathlon and was ready to drop wrestling. Further reforms are necessarily, but similar to the arguments against FIFA, they only work if they're done right. And I'm not sure I trust this organization to do that.

I don't know what the solution is. But I think "reform" is the right word to use to describe it.

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I would argue that seating capacities for the WOGs need to be reduced when it comes to the ice events. IOC requirements call for a minimum of a 12,000 seat arena for ice hockey and figure skating. How many cities can realistically support two large arenas? Very few. Vancouver was an exception (most cities demolish the older arena after building a new one). The last WOGs with an arena for less than 10,000 capacity for figure skating was Torino with the Palavela which held only 9,000. Calgary held figure skating events at the Corral which was even smaller. Salt Lake City got by building a 10,000 seat arena for ice hockey because they had a need for a home for a minor league team, but most cities cannot support both. Sochi promised both the Iceberg and the Shayba Arena would be temporary. Both are now white elephants. Pyeongchang claims one of their ice hockey arenas will be portable and relocated after the WOGs. I'll believe that when I see it just like they said the Incheon Asiad Stadium would be reduced to 20,000 (another epic failure in terms of legacy). As for speed skating, is it absolutely necessary to have the event indoors?

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I would argue that seating capacities for the WOGs need to be reduced when it comes to the ice events. IOC requirements call for a minimum of a 12,000 seat arena for ice hockey and figure skating. How many cities can realistically support two large arenas? Very few. Vancouver was an exception (most cities demolish the older arena after building a new one). The last WOGs with an arena for less than 10,000 capacity for figure skating was Torino with the Palavela which held only 9,000. Calgary held figure skating events at the Corral which was even smaller. Salt Lake City got by building a 10,000 seat arena for ice hockey because they had a need for a home for a minor league team, but most cities cannot support both. Sochi promised both the Iceberg and the Shayba Arena would be temporary. Both are now white elephants. Pyeongchang claims one of their ice hockey arenas will be portable and relocated after the WOGs. I'll believe that when I see it just like they said the Incheon Asiad Stadium would be reduced to 20,000 (another epic failure in terms of legacy). As for speed skating, is it absolutely necessary to have the event indoors?

But you need the big arenas to at least break records. What good is it staging an Olympics if you do not achieve one 'biggest' record -- even if it's just the BIGGEST Olympic DEBT in history? :lol::lol:

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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I would argue that seating capacities for the WOGs need to be reduced when it comes to the ice events. IOC requirements call for a minimum of a 12,000 seat arena for ice hockey and figure skating. How many cities can realistically support two large arenas? Very few. Vancouver was an exception (most cities demolish the older arena after building a new one). The last WOGs with an arena for less than 10,000 capacity for figure skating was Torino with the Palavela which held only 9,000. Calgary held figure skating events at the Corral which was even smaller. Salt Lake City got by building a 10,000 seat arena for ice hockey because they had a need for a home for a minor league team, but most cities cannot support both. Sochi promised both the Iceberg and the Shayba Arena would be temporary. Both are now white elephants. Pyeongchang claims one of their ice hockey arenas will be portable and relocated after the WOGs. I'll believe that when I see it just like they said the Incheon Asiad Stadium would be reduced to 20,000 (another epic failure in terms of legacy). As for speed skating, is it absolutely necessary to have the event indoors?

What needs to be done is for it to be made clear that those "requirements" are more suggestions than anything. The IOC can still have their vision of what things like seating capacities should be, but they need to be flexible. Which is part of the argument with Agenda 2020.

That said - and I know I say this a lot here - it's still a competition. All other things being equal, if 1 bid has a 12,000 seat arena, and the other is only 9,000, who do you think is going to be picked. It doesn't have to be Sochi where literally everything is built from scratch. But there are cities (or regions) that can support what's being asked of them. And at the end of the day, it is a popularity contest. So no, it is not absolutely necessary to hold speed skating indoors. However, if you're an IOC voter, that might sway your opinion one bidder versus another, having an indoor venue is a plus. The Olympics are supposed to be THE world class competition for most of these sports. They'll want it to be held in a venue that fits the event. Easier said than done since you have all these sport federations involved, but that's where there needs to be a balance between money spent and the legacy something leaves.

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So 2006 has one of the smallest arenas. Nobody cares. Having < 10,000 did nothing to diminish a fantastic competition. The only reason for wanting bigger arenas is the ability to sell more tickets, make more money, and allow more spectators to attend your events.

FTFY

You know who cares about having smaller arenas? The people that can't get tickets to those events because the capacity is smaller. Obviously it's a balancing act to figure out what's big enough and what's too big. And you're right that it doesn't diminish the competition. These host city votes are still a popularity contest though. Maybe the IOC should be more flexible with their seating requirements, but when it comes down to choosing a host city, the number of tickets that would be made available is not something that is merely about ego.

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ATR ranks Almaty higher in their power index. Hmm fascinating.

ATR Olympic Bid Power Index - April 2015 Categories:
Almaty
Beijing
Ambience (out of 5)
4
2
Accommodation
7
8
Bid Operation
6
7
Finance
7
8
Last Games (out of 5)
5
3
Legacy
8
6
Marketing
6
7
Public Support
7
8
Transportation
6
7
Venue Plans
7
7
Weather/Snow4 8 3
POWER INDEX

TOTALS
71
66

http://www.aroundtherings.com/site/A__50947/Title__2022-Olympic-Bid-Power-Index----Flawed-2022-Winter-Olympic-Bids-Ranked/292/Articles


Well that majorly screwed up. just click the link

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Some of the scoring makes no sense. Like for transportation, Almaty clearly has the far better advantage considering everything is within close proximity. Even though getting to Almaty may pose a challenge, once you're there you don't have to deal with the traffic of a 20+ million population, nor do you have to rely on a light speed rail. And when they bid for the 2014 Olympics, their transport concept was scored higher than Salzburg, Peyonchang and Sochi.

And I think Almaty has a slight advantage in venues since the largest obstacle of a WOGs, which is the outdoor venues, is almost completely taken care of, whereas Beijing will almost have to start from scratch.

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The one that stood out was Almaty's 8 versus Beijing's 3 for weather/snow. Given that these are Winter Olympics and the IOC (hopefully) knows how expensive snow is to be made/transferred, this aspect could give Almaty a real advantage they are already playing on with the "Keeping It Real" slogan. B)

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Not surprised, Almaty has been a realistic bid all along, and actually seems to be gaining momentum just at the right time.

So do they have a rating for human rights, freedom of expression, democracy... not that that would change the outcome, it would be a zero or one for them both.

Would be delighted with this new frontier...

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Not surprised, Almaty has been a realistic bid all along, and actually seems to be gaining momentum just at the right time.

Oh? How do you figure, when by all accounts the only things I've read is how the 2022 bid race is the "forgotten race", or the Winter Olympics "that no one credible wants". Even at this years SportAccord (where such things as momentum can be determined), the 2022 bids were in the back-burner, & the main story from Sochi was how the head of the international sports federations was attacking Bach & his organization.

And even then, we can't read too much into these things. Like when the Madrid 2020 "momentum" hysteria started taking off after the 2013 SportsAccord, where everyone was "charmed" by Prince Felipe & his posse. In the end, the flashy show meant nothing, & the momentum went out the window. And in that case, there was reason to believe there might have been something there. Not here, though.

One of the other most interesting elements I see, is that no bid (Summer or winter) has ever gone to win an Olympics without having at least one IOC from that respective country. China has three. Kazahkstan has zero.

*IOC member

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Oh? How do you figure, when by all accounts the only things I've read is how the 2022 bid race is the "forgotten race", or the Winter Olympics "that no one credible wants". Even at this years SportAccord (where such things as momentum can be determined), the 2022 bids were in the back-burner, & the main story from Sochi was how the head of the international sports federations was attacking Bach & his organization.

And even then, we can't read too much into these things. Like when the Madrid 2020 "momentum" hysteria started taking off after the 2013 SportsAccord, where everyone was "charmed" by Prince Felipe & his posse. In the end, the flashy show meant nothing, & the momentum went out the window. And in that case, there was reason to believe there might have been something there. Not here, though.

One of the other most interesting elements I see, is that no bid (Summer or winter) has ever gone to win an Olympics without having at least one IOC from that respective country. China has three. Kazahkstan has zero.

*IOC member

Fully second FYI's line of argument here: Almaty showed very little enthusiasm for the Winter Olympics, given that the cabinet didn't give the Evaluation Commission the time of day when they came calling.

Additionally, why pick an unknown despotic country with virtually no accomplishments within the Olympic Movement when you can pick the most populous country on this planet, start developing a winter sports market there and use some of the venues from the Summer Olympics on top of that. Further, the IOC could then block a further Chinese summer bid for the foreseeable future. From a communications point of view, it is preferable for the IOC to pick China since it's a known quantity already - and that includes the skeletons in its closet. Pick Kazakhstan and you risk a PR disaster over a narcissistic dictatorship with a very skewed understanding of human rights and endless debates about the ethics of the IOC handing the Olympic Games to the highest bidder à la FIFA. As for the snow: If the IOC wants Beijing, I'm sure the Chinese will come up with an ingenuous way to have enough artificial snow at the ready for the Games. Tropical Sochi also made it happen...

Usually, those crowing about supposed momentum are the ones that don't have it: It's true in politics, it's true in Olympic bidding.

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Additionally, why pick an unknown despotic country with virtually no accomplishments within the Olympic Movement when you can pick the most populous country on this planet, start developing a winter sports market there and use some of the venues from the Summer Olympics on top of that. Further, the IOC could then block a further Chinese summer bid for the foreseeable future. From a communications point of view, it is preferable for the IOC to pick China since it's a known quantity already - and that includes the skeletons in its closet. Pick Kazakhstan and you risk a PR disaster over a narcissistic dictatorship with a very skewed understanding of human rights and endless debates about the ethics of the IOC handing the Olympic Games to the highest bidder à la FIFA. As for the snow: If the IOC wants Beijing, I'm sure the Chinese will come up with an ingenuous way to have enough artificial snow at the ready for the Games. Tropical Sochi also made it happen...

The problem is that the IOC doesn't want anyone to repeat Sochi. I bet that Beijing can make all that snow, but if they choose Beijing and let them spend all that money on snow, they are going against everything Agenda 2020 stands for. It's easy to say Beijing could host the games tomorrow, and preparation would be easy. However, the article states that the mountain venues for Beijing are underdeveloped while Almaty is in good shape venue wise in both categories.

The fact of the matter is that Beijing, no matter how much it argues, would be an action of hypocrisy for the IOC. They would be allowing China to spend billions on snow. Almaty has snow. They would be allowing China to justify the building of an extremely expensive high speed rail since the mountain venues are so far away. Almaty's venues are naturally close together. In any case Beijing will spend much more than they claim, much more than Almaty will eventually spend if they win.

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Like I said earlier in the GB news wire thread, the 2022 race is too far gone to determine anything about Agenda 2020. There are so many other crucial variables involved here, besides just the mere costs, that will determine the final outcome. We won't really know how the IOC will react to it's own reforms until at least a couple of more cycles.

So saying that it would be "an action of hypocrisy" by selecting Beijing is an exaggeration when there are so many other gray areas. Especially when just making the argument that Almaty has all the "venues". Which may be so, but they still would have to be upgraded to Olympic standards anyway. They also have to build the extra hotel capacity & upgrade roads, etc which would any of that be used post-Games in a remote part of the world. Not really.

So while Beijing would have to build the rail-link, that I still would see becoming more useful, in a city of 4.4 million - being connected to an even bigger metropolitan area, than a bunch of new infrastructure that won't be used once the Games are gone anyway. That type of build up didn't help Sochi become more of a tourist mecca, & it won't in Almaty's case either.

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