Calgary, AB,

Calgary exploring a potential bid for the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games

Calgary exploring a potential bid for the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games

June 20, 2016 – Calgary, AB – Today, Calgary City Council accepted a recommendation from the Calgary Sport Tourism Authority (CSTA) to form a Bid Exploration Committee to explore the feasibility of Calgary hosting the 2026 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“Calgarians embrace the Olympic values and live the Olympic spirit. We believe that Calgary has the potential to be a strong and natural contender to repeat as host of the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games,” said Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “However, there are lots of hard questions that must be answered so we can make an informed decision about whether or not Calgarians, as a community, want to bid for the games.”

According to an independent third party study commissioned by the CSTA, the 2026 Games have the potential to add approximately $3.7 billion in GDP to the Alberta economy, $2.6 billion of additional labour income, and the creation of approximately 40,000 jobs for Albertans.

“We believe this is an opportunity to sustain and grow Calgary’s capacity as a world-class sport hub, grow our economy, create jobs, and provide a global showcase for Calgary’s arts and culture community,” said Doug Mitchell, chair of the CSTA. “It would be an honour to pass the torch of Olympic civic pride and legacy to a new generation of Calgarians.”

Calgary City Council authorized up to $5 million from the City’s fiscal sustainability reserve to conduct a feasibility study on hosting the games. The study, called a Bid Exploration, will result in a Master Hosting Plan, which will focus on maximizing the use of existing facilities. The plan will also provide a detailed analysis of the capital and operating costs for hosting the games and the level of investment required from the three orders of government.

The Bid Exploration will also result in the development of a long-term renewal plan for Calgary’s 1988 legacy facilities regardless of whether an Olympic bid is undertaken. It will provide valuable information on the investment required to upgrade Calgary’s legacy facilities. The 1988 legacy facilities are nearly thirty years old and will require investment in order for Calgary to maintain its competitive edge as a world-class leader in the sport development industry.

The Bid Exploration Committee membership and governance structure will be announced in August 2016. The Committee will report back to council with its interim findings in January and April 2017 and will provide its final report to Council by July 2017.


Background information attached.