Paris, May 15 (IANS) The International Olympic Committee (IOC) Evaluation Commission head said he was impressed by the Paris bid committee’s presentation of an “exceptional and detailed” project, also putting the tag of “extraordinary cities” on Paris and Los Angeles as they duel to host the 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“Our focus is to try to understand the vision and the concept of the Games, also the value that Paris 2024 would not only bring to the Games but also to the city. Our friends from Paris 2024 offered us an exceptional and detailed presentation of projects with very tangible opportunities,” said the IOC Evaluation Commission president Patrick Baumann, who led an eleven-member delegation for a three-day inspection tour, reports Xinhua news agency.
The delegation wrapped up their inspection tour in Los Angeles earlier this week before they arrived in Paris.
“Both are extraordinary cities with their own history and many different aspects,” Baumann said.
“They are two big cities, they are two Olympic cities. Paris has hosted the Olympic Games twice, as has Los Angeles. The Olympic spirit in both cities is strong. From this point, it’s almost impossible to lower the score by 10 out of 10,” he added.
On the first day of inspection in the French capital, the IOC delegation held a closed-door meeting with the Paris bid committee, mainly focusing such aspects as concept, vision, experience and legacy.
Paris bid committee co-president Tony Estanguet described Sunday’s dialogue with the delegation “constructive.”
“They have been impressed by the quality of the landmarks and the iconic venues we will offer to promote the Games and make sure that those Games will be unforgettable,” Estanguet said.
According to the other co-president of the Paris bid, Bernard Lapasset, the delegation and the Paris bid committee will have a meeting with newly-elected France President Emmanuel Macron, on Tuesday morning.
Estanguet also put aside the discussion about the 2028 Games, which has been considered by the IOC to announce each of the two candidate cities as hosts for 2024 and 2028 Games to avoid leaving the other as a losing side.
“The mandate of the IOC Evaluation Commission is very clear. They will only assess our project for 2024. So we didn’t open at all the discussion on this topic (the 2028 Games),” he said.
The delegation is scheduled to visit some proposed venues or iconic backdrops for the 2024 Games, including the Eiffel Tower, Roland Garros and the Stade de France, next Monday.
The host city of the 2024 Games will be voted by the IOC members at their session in Lima, Peru on September 13.