Stockholm City Hall Throws Support Behind Olympic Bid for 2030-2034 Winter Games Ahead of Crucial IOC Meeting

LAUSANNE, Switzerland: The Stockholm city council publicly supported Sweden’s latest bid to host the 2030 Olympics ahead of key meetingsTuesday for potential Winter Games hosts.

An International Olympic Committee panel is taking online presentations from would-be hosts to prepare for decisions scheduled for next week. The IOC executive board aims to pick preferred candidates for staging the Winter Games in 2030 and 2034 when it meets in Paris over three days through Dec. 1.

While Salt Lake City is widely favored for 2034 — 32 years after hosting the 2002 Olympics — the options for 2030 are Sweden, France and Switzerland. The Swiss bid needs to win a vote Friday of national sports bodies to advance.

Preferred candidates can then enter exclusive negotiations, known in Olympic jargon as “targeted dialogue.”

The IOC last month set a target of July for its members — meeting in Paris on the eve of the 2024 Summer Games — to rubber stamp back-to-back winter hosts recommended by the Olympic body’s board.

Sweden is in the race again after eight failed Winter Games bids. It was a surprise entry this year after long-time 2030 favorite Sapporo faded amid investigations of bribery linked to preparing for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

The latest Swedish project revives the Stockholm-centered bid that lost in 2019 when a lack of guarantees from public authorities helped steer victory to Milan-Cortina d’Ampezzo for the 2026 edition.

The city of Stockholm said Tuesday its backing for an economically and environmentally sustainable bid was conditional on the national government continuing to underwrite the project.

The Swedish plan would use existing venues across the country, including at ski resort Are hundreds of kilometers (miles) from Stockholm, and a sliding sports track across the Baltic Sea in Latvia.

The Swiss bid would be a national project and the French proposal would use ski sites across the Alps and ice rinks in the coastal city Nice on the French Riviera.

Salt Lake City officials have targeted 2034 so the United States can avoid hosting back-to-back Olympics after the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Games.

The IOC now requires bidders to control costs and avoid building new sports venues that typically drove Olympic hosts to overspend their budgets.

Olympic hosts are no longer chosen in contested votes with rival candidates on the ballot. Those traditional contests led to expensive campaigns, often rejection by local voters in a referendum, and vote-buying allegations that tainted wins by both Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo.

Instead, about 100 elected IOC members, who include a range of sports officials, former athletes, royal family members and industry leaders, now approve a single choice presented by the organization. The first host chosen this way was Brisbane, which two years ago was awarded the 2032 Summer Olympics.


AP coverage of the Paris Olympics: