Salt Lake City has been selected by the United States Olympic Committee for a potential bid to host the 2030 Winter Games.
The USOC has expressed interest in bidding for a future Winter Olympics, but has not determined when a formal bid will take place, the organization said in a statement on Friday.
However, at a board meeting in San Francisco it was determined that Salt
Lake City — which hosted the Winter Games in 2002 — rather than rival Denver, Colorado, was the best fit for a possible bid.
“This selection affords the USOC and Salt Lake City the opportunity to move forward with the International Olympic Committee’s ongoing dialogue phase,” the USOC said in a statement.
With venues still in place from 2002, Salt Lake City’s bid backers say they
can host the Games at a lower cost — in line with the aims of the International Olympic Committee.
Cities bidding for the 2026 Winter Olympics have been reduced to two —
Milan and Stockholm, after the Swiss city of Sion and an Austrian bid base
around Graz withdrew citing lack of political and public support.
The Canadian city of Calgary pulled the plug on its bid in November after
residents roundly rejected it in a referendum.
USOC chief executive Sarah Hirshland said in a media conference call on
Friday that Salt Lake City’s more compact bid, its existing venues and solid
local support were key reasons it was selected over Denver, which proposed widely scattered venues.
“It is critical to ensure that we have the ability to create an incredible
experience for athletes while at the same time managing sustainability and fiscal responsibility,” Hirshland said. “It was clear to us when we were there and in what they presented that Salt Lake City very much understands the practical realities of hosting a Games, but also wants and supports what they represent.”