Crazy Larry sees “slim chance”, and you know what he says? He says, “So, you’re saying there’s a chance!” Birmingham doesn’t meet basic qualifications for an Olympic bid:
A host city for the summer games needs at least 40,000 rooms in hotels rated three stars or higher, for example. The Birmingham metro area has a total of 20,000 rooms of all ratings, with 500 to 1,000 rooms in new developments planned.
A host city must demonstrate that it can cooperate with county and state governments, bid managers said. Birmingham, Jefferson County and the state famously bicker.
The city must guarantee the financial success of the games. The Florida legislature passed a bill promising to cover Olympic losses up to $150 million, should Tampa have won the 2012 games. Jefferson County’s financial woes – the county is at risk of declaring the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history – certainly would influence the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Tampa, with help from St. Pete and Orlando, got knocked out in the first round of bidding by the USOC. Oh, but what the heck, it’s worth a shot, right?
There is no hard and fast price tag for what it costs to bid for the Olympics. But recent bids typically cost $5 million to $10 million in the initial phase, when a community is competing against other U.S. cities. If the city is chosen by the U.S. Olympic Committee to be the nation’s candidate, costs go up exponentially.