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Calgary's Potential 2026 Winter Olympic Bid

Are you in favour of Calgary's Potential Olympic Bid in 2026?

  • Yes

    Votes: 28 60.9%
  • No

    Votes: 12 26.1%
  • Unsure

    Votes: 6 13.0%

  • Total voters
    46

UrbanWarrior

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I really hope we get the Olympics. It'll be such a great promotion of Calgary to the world.
 

Oddball

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There's a cost estimate from the bid exploration committee for Calgary's potential bid. They expect the games to cost roughly $4.6B and be able to recoup $2.2B from the operation of the games (Tickets + IOC Funding + Sponsorship). Thus an anticipated need for $2.4B in additional funding from governments. Which, all told is a pittance at the Olympic scale, but no small amount of money to come up with when the provincial governements are running some pretty eye watering deficits right now.

The press release unfortunately does not offer a break down of where the $4.6B would need to be spent. I how much for security? How much and for which venues? The bid exploration committee's website doesn't have details on the facilities master plan yet. I'm particularly interested whether these number takes into account the new arena?
 

Operater

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Hi Group,
Olympic Bid? I remember way back in 81 I believe when the City Won the bid to Host the 88 Games. If I remember it right We Did OK and the Games were "Self Supporting" at the Time. Calgary Got a LOT of Olympic Venues Out Of It. Its NOW 2017! I would Still Support a Bid because I Look at the Economic Benefits and They are HUGE as I See It. A BIG Shot in the Arm for Calgary and Alberta if We do it Right. The Only thing Holding Us BACK are a City Council Who Don't have the Guts to Make a
Positive Decision as Its a Civic Election Time. I Also Suspect a Lot of Aldermen Could B Out Replaced by a Radical Group. What Could Kill It? Try the NIMBIES and the
Malcontemps who Have a We will B Dammed if We Will Pay for It Mentality. - High Taxes for Starters.. I'll GO with a POSITIVE Outlook but Don't Really Expect to See It,

Tnx,
Operater.
 

maestro

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There's a cost estimate from the bid exploration committee for Calgary's potential bid. They expect the games to cost roughly $4.6B and be able to recoup $2.2B from the operation of the games (Tickets + IOC Funding + Sponsorship). Thus an anticipated need for $2.4B in additional funding from governments. Which, all told is a pittance at the Olympic scale, but no small amount of money to come up with when the provincial governements are running some pretty eye watering deficits right now.

The press release unfortunately does not offer a break down of where the $4.6B would need to be spent. I how much for security? How much and for which venues? The bid exploration committee's website doesn't have details on the facilities master plan yet. I'm particularly interested whether these number takes into account the new arena?

I can think of better things to waste $2.4 billion on than a bloated games. In any case, it's hardly a pittance.
 

Oddball

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Sadly, I've been becoming more ambivalent toward the thought of Calgary getting the games as time has gone on. The idea still sounds wonderful, but the cost given the status of public finances at all three levels of government doesn't seem feasible and some of the cost cutting ideas I've heard are pretty disappointing. The worst one I heard was having the opening and closing ceremonies as well as the hockey up in Edmonton. Doesn't really sound like Calgary would be getting the Olympics under those circumstances.

As such, I haven't really been following the status of the bids as much as I was a year ago. A quick perusal of the Wikipedia article for the 2026 Winter Games seems to show that the currently tepid reception is rapidly cooling globally too. Calgary, Sapporo, Japan and Sion, Switzerland all still seem to be in the hunt with Salt Lake, USA (might be out on account of the 2028 Summer Games having been awarded to LA) and Telemark, Norway on the fringe. Lots of the other potential bidders have already closed the door. According to this source, which is a citation in the Wikipedia article, Calgary's bid is contingent on support from the Federal and Provincial governments before January. So maybe we'll be on our way out of the process before long too.

All that negativity aside and in the spirit of all the recent fun fantasy transit thinking, I've been kinda trying to imagine how the games might look if held here.

There are going to be 15 disciplines at the 2018 games in Peyonchang.

I'm making a few assumptions about the bid. Firstly that Nakiska would get the proposed upgrades needed to play host to all the downhill events. So between Nakiska and Winsport, Alpine Skiing (1), Free Style Skiing (2), Snowboard (3), Bobsleigh (4), Luge (5) and Skeleton (6) should be covered. With modernization, I'm also assuming that the Canmore Nordic Centre and the Olympic Oval would be able to resume their previous hosting duties, so that covers Long Track Speed Skating (7), Cross-Country Skiing (8) and Biathlon (9).

Based on Pyeongchang, the remaining skating disciplines are using up three arenas. If we assume that cooler heads prevail and the Victoria Park Arena goes forward (possibly if not probably with funding from the Games) and that demolition of the Saddle Dome is delayed that, would likely cover most of what's needed. Some combination of Father David Bauer, Winsport Arena and the Max Bell would probably have to make due if we're being serious about a somewhat affordable games. As cool as I think it might be to see a partnership with say MRU for a new 5-10K seat arena, that just doesn't sound cost effective. So that's ice hockey (10), figure skating (11), shot track speed skating (12) and curling (13).

So that leaves ski jumping (and Nordic combined). From what I hear, the current facilities at Winsport are woefully out of date and are likely not able to be updated due to advancements in the sport over the last several decades. So that means building something new. The wind is also apparently a big reason those jumps have become a while elephant so rebuilding on site probably becomes undesirable. So if Winsport is out, it makes the most sense to build it near other venues. No where else in the city makes sense. so that leaves Nakiska or Canmore. Nakiska is probably the most feasible with it already in need of upgrades and hosting a large number of events as it stands. So why not concentrate the events and the investment. Sounds good. Sorry Canmore, as freaking cool as I think it would be to see some jumps become part of the landscape in the town, Nakiska just makes more sense. Either would do ultimately so long as a suitable site where they don't become derelict again is found. That gives us Ski Jumping (14) and Nordic Combined (15).

Obviously the games entail more than just sporting events. There's also the opening and closing ceremonies which I have to think would take place at a rebuilt McMahon stadium. Vancouver had many cultural events scattered throughout the city. If there's one thing our city can handle, it's a city wide party. :D Olympic Plaza, Prince's Island, St. Patrick's Island, St. George's Island, Telus Spark, the New Library, the NMC, Fort Calgary, the BMO Centre and the Stampede Grounds would probably all be rocking with national and provincial pavilions and various other events. The BMO Centre and/or the Telus Convention Centre would probably make good media centres. Also following the model of the Vancouver games, I imagine Calgary would want to make sure the local aboriginal groups are properly represented, so I would imagine there would be some official and or endorsed activities on the Stony and T'suu Tina nations as well.

That leaves one pretty interesting open question. Athletes' and Media Villages. The 88' versions have since seen new life as condos and dorms. I think with the recent glut of dorms built on the U of C campus, I don't think you could pull the same trick twice. Vancouver had two Athletes Villages, one downtown and one at Whistler. Following this model and with the necessary event improvements, Nakiska and Kananaskis Village would really be the big winners of the games. They'd pretty much be going from a minor resort to a small town. To me that's got to be one of the coolest potential fringe benefits of hosting the games.

Within the city, most of the focus for athletes would be on the west side of town. So building out by Winsport might make the most sense. It's too bad Paskapoo Slopes and Greenwich are take up some excellently positioned land. There's still space in the area of Crestmont and Valley Ridge. That might also be potentially far west enough that you don't have two build two villages. It's less than an hour from there to Nakiska.

Another option that I'd love but would be less workable for transportation would be along 9th or 10th Ave downtown. Sort of in the immediate vicinity of the new Marriott. That way the athletes would be right in the city. Not too far off from where the general festivities are happening, but far enough to have some separation. These buildings would probably make more desirable condos after the games than those flung out on the west side of town. It would also double as a nice community revitalization. If train transport is also part of the plan for getting athletes around, that would also likely be closely situated to a downtown train station. They could send a couple Athlete expresses every morning with stops a Bowness, Highway 40 (for transfer to buses) and Canmore. The Stonies would probably not mind having a future train station and the accompanying infrastructure next their resort. With appropriate compensation I'm sure.


Enough with the Blah-Blah-Blahs, this is largely a fantasy post and around here that means one thing: Maps!

Main Sites
upload_2017-11-30_14-14-44.png


Downtown Venues
upload_2017-11-30_14-14-44.png


West Calgary/Winsport Venues
upload_2017-11-30_14-2-52.png


U of C & McMahon Venues
upload_2017-11-30_14-7-6.png


Mountain Venues

upload_2017-11-30_14-17-4.png


 

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Habanero

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I voted no. A year ago, when this poll came out i would have voted yes, but I've heard too many negative things about the IOC and the Olympics.
 

Mountain Man

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IOC is in town this week to look at Calgary and meet with officials here. The games are probably ours to lose if we decide we want them...
 

Oddball

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Such is the impression I get from the media reports. I'd still like to have the Olympics if we could get them, but it would be nice if we could cut ourselves a better deal.
 

Oddball

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Based on the CP Olympic thread, it sounds like they're relaxing on venue size, quality and location constraints, such that venues in other cities and even countries may be allowed.

I wonder if that could revive Quebec City's future bid hopes if it partners with Vermont?
 

Stephen Ave

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I’ve heard people mention the idea of sharing the Olympics with Edmonton, and I am dead set against that. We would only be using Edmonton for their arena, which means that hockey and figure skating the two highest profile events in the winter Olympics would be up in Edmonton. No thanks, they can’t do the Olympics without us, but we can do the Olympics without them.

Regarding the Olympics themselves, I’m all for the idea if it’s not going to cost us too much, if the IOC chips in 1 billion, and it brings our cost down to 1.5 billion, I’m on board with that.
 

Oddball

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I 100% agree. No Edmonton. We aren't putting on the games to give the marquee events like the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and Hockey. No way.

Calgary and the Bow Valley is where the games have to go down. I'd be ok if Ski Jumping went to Whistler, but we're hardly talking about a marquee event in that case.
 

darwink

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Potential cost savings on ski jumping is sub $50 million. More like sub $15 million iirc from the report that went to council in the summer.

If it sells the project maybe can help more than the dollars saved.
 

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