(ATR) Birmingham, England is the choice to replace Durban, South Africa as host for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Birmingham wins right to host 2022 Commonwealth Games (Birmingham 2022)
The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) made the announcement on Thursday, after keeping Birmingham waiting for almost three months while additional financial guarantees from the city and the government were finalized. The British government is financing 75 percent of the $1 billion estimated cost of the Games.
Birmingham 2022 is expected to take place from July 27 to August 7, marking 20 years since Manchester 2002, the last time the Games were held in England. The 2014 edition was held in Glasgow, Scotland.
“Today is a fantastic day for Birmingham, global Britain and our resurgent Commonwealth Sports Movement,” CGF President Louise Martin told those gathered for the announcement at the Arena Academy school in BIrmingham.
“The vast majority of the Games venues are in place, and with extensive experience in the UK of hosting successful major events – including Manchester 2002, London 2012 and Glasgow 2014 - the CGF looks forward to a truly spectacular Games that delivers not only for the 2.4 billion citizens across the Commonwealth but the wider world, too.”
The CGF awarded Durban the 2022 Games in 2015 but dropped the city in March (CGF)
Birmingham was the only city to meet the Sept. 30 deadline to apply but the CGF Executive Board in early October extended the period for accepting “fully compliant proposals” to Nov. 30.
Birmingham was chosen over Liverpool in September as the candidate city for the United Kingdom.
“The hard work begins now and we all have just four-and-a-half years to deliver an unforgettable Games that will shape the future of our city, our region and our people,” Ian Ward, leader of Birmingham City Council and chair of the bid team, said in a statement.
The Birmingham 2022 Organizing Committee will be aided in its efforts by the new CGF Partnerships delivery model. The CGF will take a more active and direct role in the delivery of the Games through the creation of an integrated delivery team, working in close partnership with the host city and the UK’s Commonwealth Games Association. The CGF believes this will help to deliver the Games more efficiently and economically, and create a strong legacy for future hosts.
The CGF was forced to create a fast-track process for the 2022 event after it revoked the original hosting rights of Durban in March due to a lack of organization and financial commitments. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, host of the 1998 Commonwealth Games and 1994 hosts Victoria, British Columbia seriously considered joining Birmingham in bidding but ultimately did not.
Australia had also admitted interest to a bid in April, according to the CGF. But Commonwealth Games Australia chief executive Craig Phillips had been on record since March saying an Australian bid would be made only as a last resort.
Australia’s Gold Coast is hosting the 2018 Commonwealth Games in April.
The CGF president confirmed on Thursday that Malaysia, Canada and Australia have all signaled their potential interest in hosting the Commonwealth Games in either 2026 or 2030.
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Written by Gerard Farek
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