SBD/June 17, 2011/Olympics

Dallas 2020 Committee Working Under The Radar To Plan Olympic Bid

The Dallas 2020 Committee “has been working -- mostly under the radar -- to build momentum for a Summer Olympics bid,” according to Jeff Mosier of the DALLAS MORNING NEWS. Dallas attorney Matt Wood, who is leading the effort, said that “even the expectation that the United States won’t bid on the 2020 games hasn’t slowed down the two dozen or so volunteers” working on the 1 1/2-year-old campaign. Wood acknowledged that it is “still early in a long effort.” Dallas 2020 members “have worked out some logistics of hosting the games, from proposing an Olympic Village near Fair Park and a new swimming facility at Southern Methodist University.” But “part of the pitch” is that the Dallas area “has plenty of venues already, including Cowboys Stadium, American Airlines Center and Pizza Hut Park in Frisco.” Wood said that the committee “is working with HKS, the Dallas architectural firm that designed Cowboys Stadium, to determine the cost of renovating the Cotton Bowl.” Mosier notes if the USOC “passes on a bid this time, it would be at least another four years before U.S. cities get a shot to compete for the Summer Olympics and a couple of years after that before a winner is selected.” USOC Communications Dir Mark Jones “declined to elaborate on the committee’s thinking about the 2020 games.” He would “only say the organization had no plans to pursue the 2020 Summer Olympics, but officials previously haven’t ruled out a bid.” North Texas “attempted to become the U.S. bidder for the 2012 games but wasn’t one of the U.S. finalists” (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 6/17).

TOKYO OFFICIAL WANTS BACK IN: Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara Friday said that he wants the city to bid for the '20 Games. At a speech during a regular session of the Japanese capital's metropolitan assembly, Ishihara said, "I want this to be considered. I hope Japan will be united in this effort." Ishihara was the "driving force behind Tokyo's failed bid" to host the '16 Games (AP, 6/17). Ishihara argued that the '20 Games could be "a boost to Japan's quake and tsunami recovery," suggesting that "rebuilt disaster zones could hold some events" (AFP, 6/17).
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