Sunday, July 21, 2024

Victoria announces plan to bid for 2022 Commonwealth Games


Victoria has set its sights on a pitch to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The original hosting city of Durban, South Africa had their status stripped last year due to financial difficulties.

Edmonton, Alberta, was also in the running against Durban but pulled out in February 2015.

Victoria’s bid committee consists of Suzanne Weckend, a local teacher and former Commonwealth Games athlete, and local businessman David Black.

The pair announced their plans on Wednesday.

“They need a city to step up quickly and preferably a city with all of the facilities in place,” David Black told the CBC. “We are a good Plan B for them because everyone in the Commonwealth Games loved coming to Victoria and we have really good facilities, so it is sort of a natural [fit].”

But at what cost?

However, Victoria isn’t entirely set up to host the games. Potential hosting costs could include $100 million for an athlete’s village, $80 million to house games officials and $80 million for new athletics sites.

Post-games, the athlete’s village would be converted into UVic student housing and the officials’ lodging into social housing.

Given that the federal government offered $300 million to Edmonton when they were in the running, Black is confident the city of Victoria wouldn’t have to foot too much of the bill.

When Victoria hosted the Commonwealth Games back in 1994 the city invested the profits into a legacy for athletes. That amounted to $20 million. Black said he hopes the 2022 Games would add a further $50 million to that fund.

Victoria Buzz Staff
Your inside source for Greater Victoria happenings. Established in 2012.

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