AP Photo/Alyssa Goodman

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) — Wanted: A town to host the 2026 Winter season Olympics.

Getting bidders for the Olympics used to be easy. But no longer, plus particularly for the Winter Games.

6 European cities pulled out of established bids or possible bids once the IOC sought candidates a few years back for the 2022 Winter Olympics. Metropolitan areas balked over soaring costs, politics unrest or a lack of public assistance as expressed in referendums.

That will left the IOC with just two proposals, both from severe governments that backed cities without winter sports traditions: Almaty, Kazakhstan, plus Beijing, China.

Beijing narrowly received, but that set off alarms in IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Swiss.

“The 2022 (bidding) certainly outlined the problems we were facing in bringing in cities, particularly winter cities, inch IOC member and former vice president John Coates said. “We had to do something to address the cost of the particular games. Increased costs have compelled our hand. ”

Coates mentioned the International Olympic Committee does a “total rethink” over the method the games are presented in order to potential bidders, and how they’re marketed to the public.

The Switzerland-based Olympic body is trying to rebrand, billing by itself as user friendly and at the services of host cities – and never the other way around. Officials are usually talking up flexibility and price cutting, trying to change the IOC’s picture of pressuring cities to build new sports activities venues that quickly become unused “white elephants. ”

Four cities have demostrated preliminary interest for 2026: Stockholm, Sweden; Calgary, Canada; Sion, Swiss; and Sapporo, Japan. Calgary plus Sapporo have hosted previous Winter season Olympics, and Stockholm held summer time Olympics in 1912. Sweden has not held the Winter Olympics.

“We say, come around and dialogue around, ” said Christophe Dubi, professional director of the Olympics.

Dubi mentioned Norway, Austria and the United States experienced also shown some interest : if not for 2026, then pertaining to 2030.

U. H. Olympic officials say the nation will not bid for the 2026 Games, along with Los Angeles hosting the Summer Olympics within 2028. Salt Lake City, Denver colorado and Reno, Nevada, are expected to think about 2030 bids.

Richard Brisius, the CEO of Stockholm’s exploratory committee, told The Associated Push he believes the IOC’s modifications are “real, ” not an aesthetic makeover.

“They (IOC) are taking large steps to change for the future. ” Brisius said. “That means for a small, democratic country like Sweden, we really feel now we have a good chance at this. inch

European and North American candidates possibly have an edge for 2026. Sapporo held great Olympics in 1972, but putting the games within Japan would come just after Tokyo’s 2020 Olympics, and after two winter video games in Asia: Pyeongchang and Beijing.

Coates joked that letting towns talking informally before bidding officially with the IOC eliminated “the schmoozing” and back-scratching that has gone upon, driving up costs for metropolitan areas that eventually win the bet – and even for losing metropolitan areas that don’t.

Chicago, the dropping bidder for the 2016 Summer Olympics, is reported to have spent hundred buck million on paperwork and specialists – and got nothing from this.

Winning bidders have wound up along with even larger tabs. Rio de Janeiro invested about $13 billion in personal and public money to sponsor the 2016 games, though a few put the cost at $20 billion dollars.

Sochi famously spent $51 billion dollars to prepare for the 2014 Winter Olympics, a price tag that scared away many bidders; particularly cities within Europe and North America.

Last year, the particular IOC awarded two Summer Olympics simultaneously to Paris and La – 2024 and 2028 : in one bid process. Dubi stated it was “too early to speculate” if it might do the same for that 2026 and 2030 Winter Olympics.

Simon Chadwick, who specializes in Olympics research at the University of Salford in Manchester, England, says the particular IOC has a sales job upon its hands.

“At best, the particular scientific evidence suggests that the financial benefits associated with bidding for plus hosting the Games are limited, ” Chadwick said in an e-mail to the AP. “As such, the situation for hosting is open to discussion, hence there has been an increasing trend intended for European countries to put bidding decisions to some popular vote via a referendum. inch

Voters in at least two Euro cities – Munich, Germany, plus St . Moritz, Switzerland – rejected referendums to pursue bids intended for 2022. The Munich vote has been embarrassing for IOC President Jones Bach, who is from Germany.

“The costs are not just financial, inch Chadwick wrote. “People often understand that there are social, legal and environment costs too. ” He furthermore added “opportunity cost, ” which means money spent on the Olympics could have been invested elsewhere.

China spent at least $40 billion on the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The Chinese are spending huge again on the Winter Games.

Bach has cautioned China to control in spending and “stick towards the reforms. ” But he furthermore lauded organizers for raising a lot money.

The IOC generated nearly $6 billion in revenue within the last Olympic cycle – 2013-2016 — but uses just a fraction of the to help host cities.

“We have previously discussed with the Beijing organizing panel about different venues, about the place for venues, about the scale associated with venues, in order to reduce costs, ” Bach said days before the Pyeongchang Olympics opened. “On the other hand, we need to say we are really almost overcome by the marketing success of Beijing 2022. ”

More AP Olympic coverage: https://wintergames.ap.org