SALT LAKE CITY (News4Utah) - A committee exploring the possibility of bringing the Olympics back to Utah believes the state has a good chance of landing the 2026 or more likely the 2030 Winter Games.
A recent poll shows that 89 percent of Utahns support hosting the Winter Games again but it won't be cheap, according to Olympic Exploratory Committee Co-Chairman Fraser Bullock.
"The ballpark is probably in the $1.5 to $1.6 billion range now that's in 2026 dollars," Bullock said after a meeting of the Committee Monday.
The committee says most of that money will come from the private sector through sponsorships and Utah would be the best economic option because all of the 2002 venues are still operating in fairly good condition.
News4Utah asked Governor Gary Herbert how confident he is at this point that we will see the Winter Games come back to Utah.
"I don't know that I'm confident from the standpoint of guaranteeing it," Gov. Herbert said. "But I think we have a good a chance as anybody out there to host the 2026 or 2030 Games because we do have the venues. We've already demonstrated we can host the world in ways that has never been done better."
Like the events themselves the bidding process will be highly competitive. Sion, Switzerland; Calgary, Alberta, Canada and Sapporo, Japan are also exploring bids.
"The biggest hurdle is that there are other people interested so we have to look at our opportunities versus other cities internationally. I think for 2030 we are the best bet for the entire world in terms of hosting the games because we have a great reputation, we have great venues, we have an experienced team so we think we're in a very good spot to host those games.
The clock is ticking. The Committee will meet again on January 22nd and the deadline to bid is March 31st.
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