On Tuesday morning, France's capital, Paris, confirmed it would bid to host the 2024 Summer Olympics. It's been a century since Paris hosted the Games, amid hopes that this latest bid will be fourth time lucky.
An announcement on Tuesday from the French Olympic Committee headquarters revealed that Paris was bidding for the 2024 Summer Games. The French capital joins Rome, Boston and Hamburg as declared bidders, with Budapest also expected to enter the race.
"Our goal to host the 2024 Games will excite, unite and enthuse the people of Paris, our entire nation and lovers of Olympic and Paralympic sport all over the world," said Paris bid chairman Bernard Lapassett.
Paris has not hosted the games since 1924, and has been unsuccesful with each of its last three bids in 1992, 2008 and 2012.
The bid from the French capital took time to emerge though. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo was reluctant about the potential cost, but endorsed the idea in March of this year. The city's hosting budget is expected to be around 6.2 billion euros ($6.97 billion).
"We aim to highlight the unity and the solidarity of a cosmopolitan city, which I am sure will be one of the key strengths to win," Hidalgo said, who added one factor that changed her mind about hosting the games was how millions of Parisians came onto the streets of the French capital in a demonstration of unity to mourn victims of the January attacks by Islamist gunmen on a satirical weekly and Jewish foodstore.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) president, Thomas Bach, told President Francois Hollande last April that Paris would make a "very, very strong candidate" for 2024. The deadline for submission of bids is September 15, with the IOC scheduled to announce the host city in 2017.
jh/msh (Reuters, AP)