View Full Version : Edmonton to bid for the Universiade!

02-28-2005, 08:32 AM
Edmonton is putting together a bid for the 2011 summer Universiade games, a bid committee member has confirmed. "It's something to look forward to. These are big games - as big as you get," said Ed Zemrau, who was the chairman of the committee that brought the event here in 1983.

The Universiade, or World Student Games, is an Olympic-calibre event featuring thousands of international athletes.

The University of Alberta has agreed to participate, and bid officials will meet in private with councillors tomorrow to get city hall's backing.

"We have put together a proposal, which will go to the Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) association at the end of March," Zemrau said.

The games would bring in about 7,000 university athletes from 105 countries, said Zemrau.

Montreal, as well as cities in Taiwan and China, is also reportedly preparing a bid.

The event would cost the city between $5 million and $8 million, Zemrau said.

Edmonton's Economic Development has begun looking at how much money - and exposure - the games would garner for the city.

"There's no question, high-profile, international events are important for raising the profile of the city. If you had to buy an ad that did that, it would certainly cost a lot," said EDE's president and CEO, Allan Scott.

Rod Fraser, outgoing president of the university, called the games "a powerful tool" to promote the city and the school.

A previously planned Edmonton bid for the 2009 summer Universiade fell through because no Canadian city could secure federal support.

And while the University's Butterdome and the Education car park are all legacies of the 1983 games, the details of new facilities or upgrades to current ones aren't close to being finalized, said Mike Mahon, U of A dean of physical education.

"There would be some major upgrades to both city and university facilities, both so they could be ready for the games and to be able to support events in the future," Mahon said.

"We haven't discounted building a new facility - for example, there's talk that the city needs a new competition pool - but we haven't come to that decision yet. It has to be done in conjunction with the city," Mahon said.

The bid has the resounding support of Bill Smith, who was mayor during the failed attempt to bid for the 2009 games.

"I'd be glad to volunteer ... We have all the facilities, so very little capital would be required, and with the expansion of the university, it's a slam dunk for us," Smith said.

A city bid would bring a CIS inspection team to check out facilities. The CIS can then recommend Edmonton to the International University Sports Federation, which decides the winner.

Summer Universiades are held every two years, and include competition in 10 sports: basketball, volleyball, soccer, tennis, track and field, gymnastics, fencing, diving, swimming and water-polo.

The 2005 summer Universiade is being held in Izmir, Turkey. Bangkok is hosting the 2007 games.

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What do you think? I'm stoked about this. But in the end, it's not that surprising considering how many World Class events this City hosts on a (seemingly) routine basis these days.

02-28-2005, 08:37 AM
Well the Esks have talked about a field house at Clarke Park.....:D

02-28-2005, 08:48 AM
Bring it on~

gizmo fan 2
02-28-2005, 01:14 PM
Excellent! :thup:

02-28-2005, 01:27 PM
Good news!

03-01-2005, 06:34 PM

03-01-2005, 08:37 PM
I have honestly never heard of this before but I hear Saskatoon is wanting these games as well.

03-02-2005, 08:15 AM
Whoo hoo...it just got easier for us! (Any chance Montreal looked at Edmonton's track record of hosting international events and knew that they stood no chance? A man can dream I guess...!!!)

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Edmonton's only Canadian rival for the honour of hosting the 2011 summer Universiade games has dropped out of the race, the Sun confirmed yesterday. "Montreal is not in the race anymore," said Myra Barnoti, a spokesman for the eastern city.

Montreal intended to compete for the Olympic-calibre event that features thousands of international athletes. But officials were concerned they didn't have enough time to evaluate the full scope of the project, including the required financing and security, Barnoti explained.

The decision is disappointing for Montreal but understandable, because developing a bid to host the games is very complex, said Mike Mahon, the University of Alberta's dean of physical education and recreation.

Edmonton's not in the clear yet, though, Mahon cautioned.

Calgary and Kamloops are expected to submit bids for the winter Universiade games, Mahon said. The Canadian Interuniversity Sports Association will evaluate all the bids for the Universiade, or World Student Games, and then choose just one to submit for the international competition, Mahon explained.

"Our argument is that a summer bid makes far more sense."

A wider variety of Canadian interuniversity sports fit into the summer games, including diving, fencing, soccer, gymnastics, judo, swimming, table tennis, water polo, volleyball, basketball and track and field, Mahon said.

A summer event also makes more sense because the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will be held in Vancouver a year before the Universiade, said Candice Stasynec, the city's project manager for the bid package.

The International University Sports Federation has not held the Universiade in North America since 1993, said Ed Zemrau, who was chairman of the committee that brought the event to Edmonton more than 20 years ago.

"It was in Buffalo in 1993 and Edmonton in '83, so that's a real plus. The time for North America is there," he said.

Other Canadian competitors could step in with last-minute bids, but Montreal's absence from the competition is welcome news, said Zemrau. "Montreal would have been a formidable bid."

Mayor Stephen Mandel said Edmonton has a "tremendous history" of hosting top-notch sports events.

Sandy - Edmonton
03-02-2005, 01:27 PM
I have honestly never heard of this before but I hear Saskatoon is wanting these games as well.

Saskatoon was going for the 2007 games, but dropped out because the city was too small to hold these thousands of athletes.

03-02-2005, 01:29 PM
Saskatoon was going for the 2007 games, but dropped out because the city was too small to hold these thousands of athletes.
Ohh, thats what it was. Alrighty, thanks for clearing that up.