POSTED: February 3rd 2016

Olympics: IOC President Bach takes in sites of Los Angeles and tours proposed LA 2024 venues

(L to R) Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, IOC President Thomas Bach, LA 2024 Chair Casey Wasserman © LA 2024
(L to R) Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, IOC President Thomas Bach, LA 2024 Chair Casey Wasserman © LA 2024

The LA team and IOC President Bach touring the facilities © LA 2024
The LA team and IOC President Bach touring the facilities © LA 2024

President Bach playing a little soccer © LA 2024
President Bach playing a little soccer © LA 2024

MARISSA FLANDERS (USA) / Sports Features Communications

The city of Los Angeles (LA) has been playing host to International Olympic Committee (IOC) President, Thomas Bach as he has been taking in the city's cultural and world-class sporting highlights. President Bach is getting a first-hand experience of LA 2024's progressive, but still fiscally responsible Games Bid Plan.

President Bach began his trip by attending a Lakers National Basketball Association (NBA) Game at the Staples Center, which is a proposed venue for the 2024 Games. He was accompanied by LA 2024 Vice-Chair, Earvin 'Magic' Johnson and Olympic champion. The following day, President Bach was reassured of the city's commitment to hosting the Games during a meeting with LA City Council President, Herb Wesson and LA Mayor, Eric Garcetti. From there, he traveled to the University of Southern California (USC) campus to meet USC President, C. L. Max Nikias and Senior Vice President, Todd Dickey. President Bach was informed more about the proposed site for the LA 2024 media village and the renovation plans for the iconic Coliseum.

"We were honored to welcome President Bach and the IOC to Los Angeles. Our city has changed considerably since we last hosted the Olympics but our love for the Games remains stronger than ever. If LA has the honor of hosting the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we will create a new games for a new era. We are committed to delivering a meaningful legacy not just for our city but for the region, the nation and the entire Olympic Movement," expressed Mayor Garcetti

Later in the afternoon, President Bach met with the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Chancellor, Gene Block and UCLA Vice Chancellor, Steve Olsen. After dining at the Bruin Plate dining facility, President Bach was given a tour of the state-of-the-art accommodation and sports facilities. President Bach's business day also included meeting with Olympic legends such as Steve Alford, Carl Lewis, Allyson Felix, Bart Connor, Nadia Comaneci, Kobe Bryant, and LA Director of Athlete Relations, Janet Evans.

In addition, President Bach made a visit to the Getty Center museum. After his visit to the museum, he went on to dine with LA 2024 leadership and over thirty local community and business leaders, which included LA84 Foundation President, Renata Simril; Labor Leader, Maria Elena Durazo; and Disney Chairman and CEO, Bob Iger.

The trip did not end there as President Bach still has to travel to meet with technology executives in California's Silicon Valley. He will learn how some of the world's leading green technologies and innovations in digital media that could be used for the benefit of the Olympic Movement.

President Bach stated, "You have done a great job in thinking how, in line with Olympic Agenda 2020, you can link your great Olympic legacy with an even greater Olympic future. How you can build this future on the strong foundation you have. You are a strong candidate, and it is a great race of four excellent cities, trying to embrace Olympic Agenda 2020 from very different angles. We now know wherever the Olympic Games take place in 2024 they will be great Games."

"We are very grateful to President Bach for taking the time to come and visit LA. His visit was an excellent opportunity for LA 2024 to show him, in person, the world-class facilities and venues we propose using should we have the honor of hosting the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games. To a large extent, President Bach did not need to imagine what the Games would look like in 2024; he was able to see it today. We are very fortunate that our wealth of existing and planned infrastructure means we are selecting the best choices, like the UCLA and USC campuses and their outstanding sports and accommodation facilities, not building them. Today, we were able to show President Bach that we will be able to deliver a fiscally responsible Games aligned with the sustainable principles of Olympic Agenda 2020," commented LA 2024 Chair, Casey Wasserman.

President Bach is also traveling with an IOC delegation that includes Chief of Staff, Marcus Hausen; Head of Protocol and Relations with IOC Members, Marina Baramia; Spokesman's Services Director, Mark Adams; Head of Communications for German Speaking Countries, Christian Klaue; and Director General, Christophe de Kepper.

The LA 2024 bid is being represented by LA 2024 CEO, Gene Sykes; Chair Wasserman; LA 2024 Vice Chairs, Durazo, Johnson, and Evans; American IOC Members, Anita DeFrantz, Angela Ruggiero, and Larry Probst; United States Olympic Committee (USOC) CEO, Scott Blackmun; USOC Chief External Relations Officer, Patrick Sandusky; and LA 2024 Candidature Committee staff.  

USOC CEO Blackmun concluded, "The USOC is always delighted to host President Bach in the United States. Our nation is a loyal and passionate partner of the Olympic Movement and we are committed to working under President Bach's leadership and Olympic Agenda 2020 to contribute to a brighter future for the Olympic Movement. Working in collaboration with the City of Los Angeles and LA 2024, we believe that our bid to bring the Games back to the US for the first time in 28 years can do just that. LA is an innovative city located in one of the most innovative regions in the world. LA 2024 is ready to harness this world-leading tech, education and innovation capability and put it at the service of the Olympic Movement around the world."

** MARISSA FLANDERS is a graduate of Saint Leo University with a Bachelor's Degree in Sport Business. She has over four years of writing experience and has a real passion for ice hockey following the Pittsburgh Penguins on her blog

Keywords · LA 2024 · Olympics · IOC · President Bach

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