If Colorado makes an Olympic bid it will create a “new paradigm about how you do the Olympics,” exploratory committee pitchman says
Exploratory committee studying bid hosts final public meeting in Steamboat Springs
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Could we? Should we? And just how would the Winter Olympics in Colorado look?
The committee tasked with weighing support for a possible Colorado Olympic bid visited the state’s Olympic breeding ground on Wednesday. Beneath almost 100 athlete-tagged flags draped throughout Steamboat Springs’ fabled Olympian Hall, exploratory committee member Steve McConahey shared a vision with what he called the community’s “thought leaders,” a collection of business owners and representatives from the local government, chamber, ski area and Forest Service.
“We are creating a new paradigm about how you can do the Olympics,” said McConahey, a former Denver Metro Sports Commission chaiman and Vail Valley local who served on a committee that proposed Colorado as a host for the 1998 Winter Games.
While the committee is officially only exploring the possibility of hosting the 2030 — or maybe even the 2026 — Olympics, when McConahey talks, it sounds like a pitch.
If Colorado can host a privately financed Olympics without government subsidies and guarantees, McConahey said, more cities around the world could see a new path toward hosting a Winter Games.
Where Russia spent more than $50 billion to build railways, highways and venues from scratch for the 2014 Games in Sochi, and South Korea spent about $13 billion for its show last month, Colorado could use existing venues and throw a Winter Olympics for around $2 billion, with more than $925 million of that coming from the International Olympic Committee, which is keen to see the Winter Games return to ski-loving North America or Europe.
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