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Hamburg into final five for 2024 Olympic Games

September 16, 2015

The International Olympic Committee named Budapest, Los Angeles, Paris, Rome and Hamburg as the final candidates for the 2024 Olympics. The host city will be decided at IOC meeting in Lima, Peru in September 2017.

Computeranimation Olympiastadion Hamburg Kleiner Grasbrook
Image: Computeranimation: Gerkan, Marg und Partner (gmp), Büro Gärtner und Christ/dpa

Hamburg joins Budapest, Los Angeles, Paris and Rome in the final five cities to bid for the 2024 Olympic Games after the deadline passed for new entries, the International Olympic Committee revealed on Wednesday. Toronto and the Azerbaijan capital of Baku had considered entering but finally decided against.

"We are welcoming five outstanding and highly qualified candidate cities," IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement. "Sustainability and legacy are the cornerstones of each candidature."

LA stepped in late as a promised US bidder after Boston pulled out because of financial concerns. Spiraling costs to host Games in recent years prompted the IOC to instigate Olympic Agenda 2020, aimed at making the Olympics more affordable in future. "Olympic Agenda 2020 has shaped the candidature process more as an invitation and the cities have responded by engaging with the IOC through dialogue and cooperation," Bach added.

Hamburg, which will hold a referendum in November on whether the city actually wants the Games, is proposing an inner-city Olympics with venues within walking distance for athletes after it beat out Berlin in Germany's bid race. The German port has never hosted the Games before, but may struggle as Germany are also aiming to host football's second biggest international tournament, the European Championships, that same year. Bach offered his support, though, saying he felt Germany had the infrastructure and organizational skills to host both. "I also think that nobody has real doubt about the Germans' organizational skills," Bach said in a conference call.

The 2024 host city will be decided at an IOC session in Lima, Peru in September 2017. The 2016 Games are in Rio de Janeiro, the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang in South Korea, the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo and the 2022 winter event in Beijing.

jh/jil (dpa, Reuters)