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SBD/August 28, 2013/Olympics
DC To Bid For '24 Summer Olympics, With Baltimore, Richmond Possibly Part Of Plan
Published August 28, 2013
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SHARING THE LOVE: In Baltimore, Ambrose & Dresser in a front-page piece report local venues "would stage Olympic events" under DC 2024's plan. Sweeney: "Quite honestly, we can't do it without Baltimore. Baltimore is a big partner in our game plan." He said that the group has reached out to Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Gray, and "all three support the group's work toward a possible bid." Sweeney added that he "understood that the USOC wanted to work with just one jurisdiction, instead of two." So DC is "taking the lead." Maryland Office of Sports Marketing Exec Dir Terry Hasseltine said that the decision was "made to submit a bid under only Washington's name because of its international profile." Hasseltine added that Maryland "can offer a 'great transportation infrastructure,' and Baltimore's hotels would be keys to any Olympic bid." Among the places Hasseltine "identified as potential sites of Olympic events" are the Camden Yards complex, FedExField and the Univ. of Maryland. He said that the Inner Harbor and Annapolis "would be potential sites for water sports, and Garrett County would be a candidate to host white-water events." Hasseltine wrote the bid ultimately "could involve sites as far south as Richmond" (Baltimore SUN, 8/28). DC United officials said that the MLS club would "welcome plans to have the team's proposed Buzzard Point soccer stadium be a part of a bid to bring the 2024 Olympics to the District." Team CMO Doug Hicks said that DC 2024 reps "have not reached out to the organization about their exploration of a potential Olympic bid but that he is hopeful those conversations will take place as the group moves forward with its exploration" (BIZJOURNALS.com, 8/27).
A LOT TO BE SORTED OUT: In DC, Marc Lancaster writes, "From the glory to the guts, there’s plenty to be sorted out as the Washington area takes another swing at landing its first Olympic Games." Lancaster: "It’s breathtaking to contemplate the hurdles that must be cleared just to get to that point, which of course would only be the preamble to seven more years of preparation for the event itself" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 8/28). In DC, Brad Plumer writes under the header, "Economists: It's A Terrible Idea For DC To Host The 2024 Olympics" (WASHINGTON POST, 8/28). U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT's Pat Garofalo wrote, "Plenty of bad ideas come out of Washington, D.C., but, aside from the GOP mulling over destroying the nation's credit in a fit of pique, there is perhaps none worse than having the District of Columbia bid to host the Olympics." There "must be a better use for billions of dollars than building sporting facilities that will rarely, if ever, be used again." Building new sports facilities "does tend to enrich the already rich owners of professional sports franchises." That is why it is "no surprise" to see Snyder "getting really excited." If DC "wants to engage in economic development and upgrading infrastructure, by all means, it should plow ahead right now." There is "no need to use hosting an international sporting event as an excuse to invest in better mass transit and infrastructure" (USNEWS.com, 8/27).