LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Los Angeles was formally chosen on Monday to host the 2028 Summer Olympics in a deal that virtually assures that the 2024 Summer Games will be held in the rival candidate city of Paris, Olympic officials announced.
Both cities were competing for the 2024 Games after several other candidates withdrew from contention, and the stage was set for Paris to win its bid when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) confirmed that Los Angeles had agreed to the later date of 2028.
“The IOC welcomes this decision of the Los Angeles Olympic and Paralympic Candidature Committee, and we are pleased to release the Host City contract 2028 in a transparent and timely manner,” said IOC President Thomas Bach in a statement.
The IOC said it would make contributions to the Los Angeles organizing committee worth $1.8 billion.
An official designation of Paris for the 2024 Games has yet to be announced. A representative for Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo said definitive word was expected to come when the IOC meets in September in Lima, Peru, after several more steps in the procedure had been finalized.
Still, the IOC’s unprecedented move of awarding two Games at virtually the same time turned the spotlight on security challenges facing the French capital while giving Los Angeles ample time to upgrade its public transportation system.
The deal was first reported on Monday by the Los Angeles Times, which cited an unnamed source.
The co-chair for Paris’ Olympics bid, Tony Estanguet, said its organizing team had convinced the IOC “of the merits of awarding” the 2024 Games to Paris but stopped short of saying a final decision had been made.
In a statement welcoming Los Angeles’ agreement on Monday to host the 2028 Olympics, the Paris 2024 committee called L.A.’s move “a key step in the process of awarding the Olympics.”
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office said he and other backers of the city’s bid for the Olympic and Paralympic Games would make an announcement to the news media at 5 p.m. PDT (0000 GMT).
But the decision was confirmed in nearly simultaneous statements issued hours earlier by the IOC in Zurich and the Los Angeles Olympic bid committee in Los Angeles.
“It is a win-win for the two cities,” Canadian senior IOC member Dick…