Hamburg plans consecutive bids for compact Games

Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:00am EDT
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By Karolos Grohmann

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's port city of Hamburg, bidding to become the nation's choice for a 2024 Olympic Games candidacy, is hoping its concept of "pedestrian and bicycle" Games will help win the nod, the city's sports chief Michael Neumann said.

The Hamburg Senator in charge of domestic affairs and sports who is one of the leaders of the northern German city's bid, told Reuters in an interview on Friday there would be two consecutive bids should the first for 2024 fail.

"I think bidding for the Olympics is not a sprint but a marathon," Neumann said. "I think it is smart to start bidding for 2024 and if not successful to bid again for 2028."

"We are ready to commit ourselves to two bidding processes. We want to show that we take it very seriously," he said.

Hamburg is up against Berlin, who hosted the Olympics in 1936, for Germany's candidacy, though the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) has yet to decide when a German city will bid for the Olympics.

It is likely the DOSB will announce the winning bid in December where it would also inform about which of the two Games (2024 or 2028) Germany would bid for.

Hamburg's concept is one that sees the Games held in the Kleiner Grasbrook area, technically an island but only a 10-minute walk from the city center, that would become the Olympic park.

The plan is to have every venue accessible on foot or by bicycle.   Continued...