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  • Milan 2026 Bid Forces IOC Session Change


    (ATR) The vote for the 2026 Olympic Winter Games host city has been moved forward to Lausanne in June 2019.

    IOC Members will not be touring the Milan cathedral in 2019 (Wikimedia Commons)
    With the Italian bid of Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo being shortlisted by the IOC to the candidature phase, along with challengers Calgary and Stockholm, the 2019 IOC Session can no longer be held in Milan per rules in the Olympic Charter.

    The Charter prohibits a country bidding for the Games from hosting an IOC Session where the vote will be taken.

    Milan was preparing to host the 134th IOC Session and 2026 election in September of 2019. IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper said that the Lausanne session will be timed around the opening of the new IOC headquarters. A preliminary date of June 23, 2019 was proposed. 

    An Italian NOC spokesperson told Around the Rings that the city of Milan will not bear the burden of costs allocated towards the session as a compensation agreement between CONI and the IOC has been reached. He also said that the Italian NOC fully supports the IOC’s decision.

    The IOC had accepted Milan as the host of the upcoming session following an evaluation commission visit to the Italian city on May 23-24, 2017.

    The eight-month timeframe between the candidature phase involving the Italian, Canadian and Swedish bids and the host city election will be the shortest in Olympic history.

    Juan Antonio Samaranch Salisachs, chair of the 2026 Winter Games working group, delivered a short presentation on each city before the Session voted to approve the three candidates.

    The IOC Vice President delivered high marks for all three bids, saying each city has the capability to easily organize a Winter Olympics.

    “All of them have a great plan, great concept fully embedded in Agenda 2020 and New Norm,” Samaranch said. “Each would help up in the future in pressing forward in that direction."

    Samaranch outlined the political situation for each bid. Calgarians will vote in a plebiscite on the bid in November, federal government support is required from Italy, and Sweden is in the process of forming national and local governments following recent elections.

    “Nothing that will come out of 2026 will make us ashamed in 2046.”

    Written by Brian Pinelli and Aaron Bauer in Buenos Aires

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