What Happens Next With Boston’s Olympic Bid?

U.S. Olympic Committee Chairman Larry Probst at a press conference in Boston following the city’s selection as the U.S. bid to host the 2024 Summer Games.
U.S. Olympic Committee Chairman Larry Probst at a press conference in Boston following the city’s selection as the U.S. bid to host the 2024 Summer Games.

Boston’s Olympic bid has already come a long way, having secured the United States Olympic Committee’s nomination as the country’s representative bid to host the 2024 Games.

From here, the bid will (most likely) compete against proposals from cities from across the world. Here’s a quick look at what happens next, as announced by the International Olympic Committee last year.

September: City nominations due to IOC

The USOC, and national Olympic committees from around the world, must formally nominate their proposed 2024 Summer Olympics host cities by Sept. 15.

Between now and then, the City of Boston plans to hold eight public meetings at venues across the city to talk about plans. (A ninth is scheduled for the end of September, after this deadline has passed.) During this period, Boston’s initial plans for the bid may shift some. At a press conference on Jan. 9, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said he did not foresee a circumstance in which the bid is not submitted in September.


Boston 2024, the private group behind the bid, also plans to hold monthly public meetings over the next several months, starting Jan. 21.

October: IOC meets with the cities

Less than a month later, from Oct. 7-9, the IOC will meet with the bidding cities in Lausanne, Switzerland, to talk about dates, rules, and process over the following couple of years.

Rome is going to bid for the Games. It’s also expected that Paris and either Hamburg or Berlin will, too. Istanbul may also bid, as may cities in South Africa, Australia, Russia, and Qatar.

January 2016: Bids are due

Bids are due to the IOC on Jan. 8. You could look at the applicant file as a second benchmark in a three-part bidding process for Boston. The first part was the bid it submitted to the USOC, which Boston 2024 calls a starting point. The applicant file to the IOC is fleshed out quite a bit more, but may change again and be further built upon before the final submission, which would come a year later. We’ll get to that in a bit. The applicant file would also include a guarantee letter, covering a number of things the IOC would want to ascertain. More on that below, as well.


Spring 2016: IOC makes a shortlist

The IOC will assess the bidding cities. That process will basically rank cities in a number of criteria, ranging from the proposed venues to transportation plans to security to government and public support to plans for an Olympic Village to medical capabilities, and more. (The full list can be seen here.)

Additionally, as part of a series of reforms approved by the IOC late last year, the committee will “consider as positive aspects for a bid: the maximum use of existing facilities and the use of temporary and demountable venues where no long-term venue legacy need exists or can be justified.’’ This aligns with Boston’s bid, which has to this point focused on using existing venues, especially those on college campuses, as well as temporary structures, including for a full Olympic Stadium.

Based on how that judgment process shakes out, the IOC will decide which applicants become “candidate cities’’ and advance to the next stage of the process.

And then…

That begins a whole other phase of the process, the “candidate city’’ stage. The candidates that move on from this point would head to the 2016 Olympics in Rio, as well as the IOC’s debrief from 2016 later in the year.

They would then submit their full and final bids in a “candidate file,’’ better known as a bid book. That would come in January of 2017, and would come with another submission of guarantees.

Based on the 2022 Winter Olympics bidding process (see page 213), the IOC wants to see financial guarantees from “competent authorities’’ to cover “any potential economic shortfall’’ of an organizing committee (such as Boston 2024), as well as several guarantees regarding the control of advertising and airspace. The IOC also asked in the 2022 bidding process for guarantees of local, regional, and national support for the bid; for the city to grant the bidding committee (again, such as Boston 2024) empowerment to represent it; and for guarantees of financing both for venues and infrastructure projects, of accessibility for disabled people, and that venue construction will follow both local laws and “international agreements and protocols,’’ among other things.


Following the submission of the bid book, the process would include visits to the cities from the IOC, briefings to the IOC from the candidates, and eventually—in 2017—the 130th IOC Session in Peru, where the host of the 2024 Olympics will be chosen.

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May 22, 2019 | 12:07 PM