BOSTON (CBS) – The United States Olympic Committee has chosen Boston as the U.S. bid to host the 2024 Summer Olympics and Paralympic games.
The decision came Thursday night after the USOC held a meeting in Denver, Colo.
“We’re excited about our plans to submit a bid for the 2024 Games and feel we have an incredibly strong partner in Boston that will work with us to present a compelling bid,” said USOC Chairman Larry Probst on Thursday.
Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. were the final cities in the running before Boston was chosen.
“It is an exceptional honor for Boston to be chosen as the U.S.representative in the running for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games,” Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said in a statement. “This selection is in recognition of our city’s talent, diversity and global leadership. Our goal is to host an Olympic and Paralympic Games that are innovative, walkable and hospitable to all. Boston hopes to welcome the world’s greatest athletes to one of the world’s great cities.”
John Fish, Chairman of Boston 2024, said “A Boston Games can be one of the most innovative, sustainable and exciting in history and will inspire the next generation of leaders here and around the world.”
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Governor Charlie Baker, who was sworn in just hours earlier on Thursday, said the bid is an exciting opportunity for the state.
“This is great news for Boston and the Commonwealth as it provides an exciting opportunity to promote Massachusetts on the world stage,” Governor Baker said. “I look forward to working with Mayor Walsh and the Boston 2024 organization to address the multitude of issues that need to be discussed, including keeping costs down and continuing to press forward on pledges of a privately funded Olympics as the process moves forward before the IOC.”
The group No Boston Olympics expressed disappointment in the USOC’s selection.
“The concerning thing is they’re making promises behind closed doors,” Chris Dempsey of No Boston Olympics said. “It’s important that we think big and it’s important that we invest in our infrastructure. But it’s also important to think smart.”
In its announcement, the USOC said Boston was unanimously chosen by its board of directors.
“Whenever you win a competition, it’s great! And we were up against such stiff city competition,” Boston City Councilor Stephen Murphy said.
“We are the birthplace of American history. The Freedom Trail is here, so much is here and I think there’s so much to celebrate.”
The White House issued a statement saying they support the effort to bring the Olympics to Boston.
“The President and First Lady extend their congratulations to the City of Boston on its nomination by the United States Olympic Committee to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The city has taught all of us what it means to be Boston Strong. The President and First Lady couldn’t be prouder of this accomplishment and of all of our nation’s athletes, and strongly support the effort to bring the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games to the United States. We hope to welcome athletes from around the globe to compete in Boston in 2024.
The International Olympic Committee’s deadline for 2024 bid submissions is Sept. 15, 2015.
The IOC will meet with representatives from each applicant city from Oct. 7-9, 2015, in Lausanne, Switzerland. That meeting will be to establish rules and procedures for the international bidding, the USOC said.
Cities will then have until Jan. 8, 2016, to submit their final bids to the IOC. The 2024 host city will be chosen in 2017.
Atlanta was the last United States city to host the Summer Olympics, with the games held there in 1996. St. Louis hosted in 1904, while Los Angeles was the Olympic city in 1932 and 1984.
“The United States has something unique to offer the athletes of the world and the Olympic and Paralympic movements as a whole,” said IOC Member Angela Ruggiero. “I couldn’t be more excited to share Boston’s athlete-focused vision for the Games with my IOC colleagues.”
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