By Barry Janoff
December 18, 2014: Following years of indecision, internal politics and conflict with the International Olympic Committee, the U.S. Olympic Committee has decided to move forward in the process to bid on the 2024 Summer Olympics.
The host city will be chosen from among Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., the four destinations selected earlier this year by the USOC to put together potential host bids.
The IOC’s deadline for 2024 bid submissions is Sept. 15, 2015, with the host city to be determined in 2017. The USOC initially said it would decide next month on the name of the U.S. city it would submit, but then said the decision would be made in 2015 sometime prior to the IOC deadline.
The last time the U.S. hosted the Summer Games was 1996 in Atlanta; the last Winter Games on U.S. soil was 2002 in Salt Lake CIty.
The U.S. submitted bids to host the 2012 Summer Games (New York) and the 2016 Summer Games (Chicago) but lost both times,to London and Rio de Janeiro, respectively.
Among the reasons the U.S. has not put in more bids has been the nation's economic crisis and a fallout between officials of the USOC and IOC over sponsorship and broadcast revenues. Changes at the top also waylaid strategy. In 2009, Jim Scheer resigned as CEO after six years in the position, and seven months later acting CEO Stephanie Streeter also left the post.
The position has been more stable with Scott Blackmun as CEO for the USOC since 2010.
The four cities were narrowed down this past June from a longer list that also included Dallas and San Diego.
The USOC made its decision on Tuesday (Dec. 16) following two days of meetings with representatives from each of the four cities, who presented their respective Olympic hosting plans "following six months of collaborative discussions regarding the technical elements" required to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games, according to the USOC.
The meeting took place in the offices of Electronic Arts in Redwood City, Calif.
“All four cities have presented plans that are part of the long-term visions for their communities,” Blackmun said in a statement. “At our request, and because of the preliminary nature of our discussions, the cities have not spoken about their bids publicly in great detail. That will be an important part of the process after we make our selection . . . ”
Leaders in Rome already have decided to submit a bid for the 2024 Games. Paris politicians said they would unveil in January whether or not they would seek a bid. Germany said it would unveil in March whether or not to host the Olympics that year, either in Hamburg or Berlin.
Other potential candidates include Budapest, Istanbul, a joint South Africa bid for Johannesburg-Pretoria; Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan; and Doha, the capital of Qatar. The latter two cities lost to Tokyo in the bid to host the 2020 Summer Games.
Of the four U.S. cities, only Los Angeles (Summer 1932 and 1984) has previously been an Olympics Games host.
The DC 2024 delegation included Mayor-elect Muriel Bowser, Washington 2024 chairman and CEO Russ Ramsey, former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue, Washington Wizards and Capitals owner Ted Leonsis and local Olympian Katie Ledecky.
The 2024 San Francisco delegation included mayor Ed Lee, San Francisco Giants president and CEO Larry Baer, Olympic gold medal swimmer Anne Warner Cribbs, Populous senior principal Jerry Anderson and venture capitalist Steve Strandberg.
The Boston committee included mayor Marty Walsh, John Fish (CEO of Suffolk Construction), David Manfredi founding principal for Elkus Manfredi Architects ), University of Massachusetts Boston Chancellor Keith Motley and Paralympian Dr. Cheri Blauwet.
Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti headed a committee that included top sports executive Casey Wasserman (Wasserman Media Group), community leader Kafi Blumenfield and Bill Hanway, a design expert with experience planning the Olympics.
Paying close attention are the IOC's global top tier marketing partners — Atos, Coca-Cola, Dow Chemical, General Electric, McDonald's, Omega, Panasonic, Sansung and Visa — as well as the USOC's domestic partners.
Also paying close attention is Comcast's NBCUniversal, which this past May was awarded exclusive Olympic Games broadcast rights in the U.S. through 2032 in a deal put at more than $7.6 billion by industry analysts. That extended NBC's current deal, which ran through 2020,
“This is a unique property,” Brian Roberts, the chairman of Comcast, NBCU's parent company, said at the time. “The Games are a very important piece of media real estate.”
USOC "More Optimistic Than Ever" On 2024 Games Bid
Back to Home Page