Munich hopes for Winter Olympic candidacy

Recent news of the USA's decision to withdraw from the bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, has led to a sudden rise in German hopes.
Although the host nation for the 2022 games will not be chosen until 2015, the CSU is of the opinion that this leaves a huge window of opportunity for Germany, and believes it is an opportunity that should be taken. According to Munich's newspaper the 'Münchner Merkur', Bavarian Sports Minister Ludwig Spaenle of the CSU believes that Germany would be the perfect host nation thanks to its combination of ideal winter sports venues and outstanding athletes.

After being defeated by Korea for the chance to host the 2018 Winter Games, the DOSB - The German Olympic Sports Association - decided that for the time being, there would be no further attempts to enter into the race for candidacy. The decision of the US to withdraw, however, has seemingly turned this attitude on its head. Before deciding on whether to go ahead with the bid or not, politicians will wait until after the allocation of the 2020 summer games has been awarded, which takes place September 2013, and after the Federal and Bavarian elections have taken place.

It will have been about 9 years since Europe hosted an Olympic Winter Games, with the 2010 Games having been held in Vancouver, Canada, the 2014 Games will take place in Sochi, Russia, and the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, Korea (on their third bid). But despite this long absence of the Winter Games from European soil, the CSU's enthusiasm is not shared by everyone. Some of the other potential candidate cities could be St. Moritz (Switzerland), Barcelona (Spain), L'viv (Ukraine) and Oslo (Norway). St. Moritz, which hosted the Winter Games in both 1928 and 1948, have already beaten Geneva in a competition for the right to be the Swiss candidate.

Munich's Mayor, Christian Ude of the SPD, seems to have taken a reserved approach to this new information, while the Green party has already expressed hesitance in supporting the bid if it comes around. Be that as it may, many agree that the 1972 Summer Games had an enormous positive impact on the city's infrastructure. The most obvious examples are the S-Bahn system and the pedestrian zone in both Kaufinger and Neuhauser Straße, as well as nearly the entire complex of the Olympiapark. 

If Bavaria's capital were to receive the bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympic games, it would not only be the fiftieth anniversary of the 1972 Summer Olympics, but would be the first time that any city had hosted both the Summer and Winter games.

(Stephan Rauhut helped in researching this article)


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