• Italy's news in English
Rome counts on its rich history for 2024 Olympic bid
Rome presented its plans for its 2024 Olympics bid on Wednesday. Photo: Gabriel Buoys/AFP

Rome counts on its rich history for 2024 Olympic bid

AFP · 17 Feb 2016, 15:21

Published: 17 Feb 2016 15:21 GMT+01:00

But at a glitzy and detailed presentation of their official candidacy in Rome on Wednesday, bid candidacy president Luca Di Montezemolo admitted that keeping a watchful eye on their spending budget would be among their priorities.

"The building blocks of our project are total transparency, a 'low-cost'
approach and bringing general improvement to the city," said Di Montezemolo.

With the Colosseum as their emblem and the city's major tourist attractions as venues, Rome intends to build on its strengths and existing infrastructure to avoid, like its rivals, unnecessary and unpopular costs.

Di Montezemolo, the former Ferrari chief, claims 70 percent of the facilities required to host events around Rome, which hosted the 1960 Games, are already in place.

In a bid to avoid constructing "white elephant" stadiums or venues, the construction of temporary venues is in the pipeline.

"More than 70 percent of the sites are already available. If we had to organise the opening ceremony tomorrow, as well as the athletics and swimming events, we could," said Di Montezemolo.

The race to host the 2024 Olympics began in earnest Wednesday with the four bid cities - Budapest, Los Angeles, Paris and Rome - all presenting their initial candidature files to the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Rome believes the stunning backdrop of some of its famous historical sites offers competitors, spectators and millions of viewers around the the chance to take a unique trip back in time.

Athletes would step up to receive their medals in front of the Colosseum, the cycling road races would be held around the ancient sites of the Fori Imperiali and archery events would be held at the Baths of Caracalla.

The marathon races would pass by St. Peter's Basilica, a synagogue and a mosque and the Circus Maximus - in antiquity, the venue that hosted brutal chariot races.

Story continues below…

A Rome Olympics would be held around three key centres: the Foro Italico, built in the 1920s and completed, notably the Stadio Olimpico, ahead of the 1960 Games, the Fiera di Roma and Tor Vergata, which would host the Olympic Village.

Di Montezemolo said their budget for permanent venues (principally the Olympic Village and the press centre), would rise to €2.1 billion.

"It's our plan to build temporary venues. We don't want to be left with any white elephants," he said.

For more news from Italy, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Italy 'held naval manoeuvres with Iran' in strategic strait
The Strait of Hormuz. File photo: AFP

The Italian ambassador called the port call "a positive sign".

Northern Italian region approves 'anti-mosque' laws
One of Italy's few purpose-built mosques, in Rome. File photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Similar laws in other regions have been scrapped for being anti-constitutional.

Former nuns to get civil union in northern Italy
The former nuns have asked for anonymity; this photo is representative only. Photo: Pexels

The nuns fell in love during a mission, and will get their civil union on Thursday.

Earthquake volunteer dies on way home from Amatrice
Amatrice was the town most severely damaged by the earthquake. Photo: AFP

The engineer had cut short his summer holiday to assist with the post-earthquake recovery.

Italy tests 3,500 children for TB after doctor diagnosed
The doctor had carried out vaccinations on thousands of small children. File photo: Pexels

The hospital stressed the tests were a "precautionary and preventative measure".

Ancient Roman coins unearthed at Japanese castle
The 4th-century copper coin found in Japan. Photo: Jiji Press/AFP

How the coins got there is a mystery.

Italy slashes growth figures ahead of crucial referendum
Matteo Renzi at a press conference last month. Photo: AFP

Italy's economy has barely grown since 1999 - hitting working and middle class voters hardest. Economists say Italy will struggle to hit even the "prudent" revised targets.

Italy professor: Students should plagiarize - teachers do
One of the university buildings. Photo: Maris Firsova

A professor at Italy's oldest university says teachers are granted "impunity" in case of plagiarism.

Pope cars auctioned off to help Syrian refugees
The cars have personalized number plates. Photo: AFP

Got a spare €9,000?

Renzi revives plan for a 'bridge to Sicily'
Renzi said the bridge would "bring Sicily closer". Photo: Sarah Murray/Flickr

The bridge was first dreamed up in the 1960's, but no prime minister has succeeded in bringing it to fruition.

Photo: Tiziana Fabi/AFP
Eight things you should know about Rome's Spanish Steps
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
The incredible hero dogs of Italy’s earthquake
Why quake-hit Amatrice will never be the same again
Why discontented Italians could derail their economy
Keep passports safe: Typical pickpocket scams revealed
Why coffee in Italy is a culture you must taste to understand
The richest families in Florence in 1427 are still rich today
So why do pasta-loving Italians live such long lives?
Italy's Renzi prepares for stormy autumn
This 104-year-old just saw the sea for the first time
Should Rome give up on its 2024 Olympic dream?
The Italian doctor giving hope to thousands of migrants
Ten 'Italian' dishes that don't actually exist in Italy
Five Italian athletes going for gold at the Rio Olympics
Trastevere: From a fiery past to Rome’s souvenir stand
Think Trump would be a disaster? Just ask the Italians
How Brexit has helped to expose Italy’s banking malaise
After Brexit, keep a close eye on Italy's Five Star Movement
12 mistakes foreigners make when moving to Italy
Why Milan could be Europe's post-Brexit financial hub
Five crowd-free alternatives to Italy's tourist hotspots
jobs available