Why D.C. Is a Perfect Olympic City, According to Its Failed 2012 Pitch

In a nutshell: Washington is used to massive crowds and attention.

National Journal
Brian Resnick
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Brian Resnick
Aug. 27, 2013, 8:07 a.m.

Because D.C has hotels and an already entrenched media presence

More than 100,000 hotel rooms of all types and price ranges.

An East Coast of North Amer­ica loc­a­tion en­sur­ing large tick­et sales and max­im­um TV ex­pos­ure and rev­en­ue.

It wouldn’t have been an Olympic city. No, that was clearly not majest­ic enough. For their joint 2012 bid for the Olympics, Wash­ing­ton and Bal­timore pro­posed host­ing the event in a grand 50-mile “Olympic cor­ridor.” Four hun­dred and sixty miles of rail would trans­port ath­letes and ob­serv­ers around D.C.; Bal­timore; An­na­pol­is, Md.; and Al­ex­an­dria, Va., util­iz­ing the re­gion’s ex­ist­ing sport­ing aren­as and a few new ones. There wouldn’t be any traffic con­ges­tion. And the world would wander, mouths agog, among “a rich back­drop, anchored by his­tor­ic build­ings, sig­ni­fic­ant in­ter­na­tion­ally known monu­ments, im­port­ant and di­verse mu­seums, and out­stand­ing pub­lic spaces.”

And yes, the Olympic vil­lage would be hos­ted at the Uni­versity of Mary­land, giv­ing the ath­letes a well-suited ven­ue for after-event romp arounds.

“While at first blush the concept of hold­ing the Games in two sep­ar­ate states and the Dis­trict of Columbia may sound daunt­ing, the real­ity is quite the op­pos­ite,” reads the bid’s now-archived web­site.

While D.C. and Bal­timore were passed over in the Amer­ic­an bid for the 2012 Olympics, per­haps some of the same pitches still res­on­ate today, see­ing D.C. may be con­sid­er­ing a 2024 (the ‘20s, of course, will be the glor­i­ous dec­ade when mil­len­ni­als’ nar­ciss­ism and sense of pub­lic ser­vice reaches a peak). As re­cor­ded in the In­ter­net Archive’s Way­back Ma­chine, here are some reas­ons why D.C. should host the games.

Be­cause D.C has ho­tels and an already en­trenched me­dia pres­ence

More than 100,000 hotel rooms of all types and price ranges.

An East Coast of North Amer­ica loc­a­tion en­sur­ing large tick­et sales and max­im­um TV ex­pos­ure and rev­en­ue.

Be­cause we’ve done the math

The bid is eco­nom­ic­ally sound and fisc­ally con­ser­vat­ive, mak­ing ex­tens­ive use of the re­gion’s many ex­ist­ing ath­let­ic and oth­er fa­cil­it­ies. An op­er­at­ing sur­plus of $92 mil­lion is ex­pec­ted, and host­ing the Olympic and Para­lympic Games is ex­pec­ted to provide an over­all eco­nom­ic con­tri­bu­tion of $5.3 bil­lion to the re­gion’s eco­nomy.

Be­cause trans­port­a­tion “will be a breeze”

The Olympic and Para­lympic Games are about mov­ing thou­sands of people with ease and com­fort. We are blessed with a mass-trans­it sys­tem that al­lows us to say with con­fid­ence today that this will be a breeze.

Be­cause the loc­als will ac­tu­ally fill the stands

In 2000, we took a blind poll of our re­gion’s cit­izens and found very strong sup­port for the idea of host­ing the Games in our re­gion. In fact, 82 per­cent of area res­id­ents sup­por­ted the idea of bring­ing the Olympic and Para­lympic Games to the area. Sixty-nine pre­cent said they would at­tend at least one event. Eighty-six per­cent said they felt the games would bring sub­stan­tial eco­nom­ic be­ne­fit.

And be­cause, Amer­ica!

As a world cap­it­al and sym­bol of in­ter­na­tion­al free­dom and friend­ship, and pos­sess­ing a wealth of in­ter­na­tion­al, sports-event, polit­ic­al, cul­tur­al, and hos­pit­al­ity re­sources, Wash­ing­ton, D.C., is uniquely po­si­tioned with its com­pel­ling and power­ful in­ter­na­tion­al strategy for bring­ing the 2012 Games to the United States.

Because we've done the math

The bid is eco­nom­ic­ally sound and fisc­ally con­ser­vat­ive, mak­ing ex­tens­ive use of the re­gion’s many ex­ist­ing ath­let­ic and oth­er fa­cil­it­ies. An op­er­at­ing sur­plus of $92 mil­lion is ex­pec­ted, and host­ing the Olympic and Para­lympic Games is ex­pec­ted to provide an over­all eco­nom­ic con­tri­bu­tion of $5.3 bil­lion to the re­gion’s eco­nomy.

Because transportation "will be a breeze"

The Olympic and Para­lympic Games are about mov­ing thou­sands of people with ease and com­fort. We are blessed with a mass-trans­it sys­tem that al­lows us to say with con­fid­ence today that this will be a breeze.

Because the locals will actually fill the stands

In 2000, we took a blind poll of our re­gion’s cit­izens and found very strong sup­port for the idea of host­ing the Games in our re­gion. In fact, 82 per­cent of area res­id­ents sup­por­ted the idea of bring­ing the Olympic and Para­lympic Games to the area. Sixty-nine pre­cent said they would at­tend at least one event. Eighty-six per­cent said they felt the games would bring sub­stan­tial eco­nom­ic be­ne­fit.

And because, America!

As a world cap­it­al and sym­bol of in­ter­na­tion­al free­dom and friend­ship, and pos­sess­ing a wealth of in­ter­na­tion­al, sports-event, polit­ic­al, cul­tur­al, and hos­pit­al­ity re­sources, Wash­ing­ton, D.C., is uniquely po­si­tioned with its com­pel­ling and power­ful in­ter­na­tion­al strategy for bring­ing the 2012 Games to the United States.

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