The second International Olympic Committee (IOC) Coordination Commission meeting with Milano Cortina 2026 was held virtually today, 19 April 2021. Despite the ongoing difficulties related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Milano Cortina 2026 Organising Committee could show the significant progress that it has been able to make since the previous Coordination Commission meeting in September last year.
Speaking after the meeting, Commission Chair Sari Essayah commented, “Since our last meeting in September 2020, the Milano Cortina 2026 Organising Committee has made great progress despite the ongoing pandemic. The most visible highlight was the selection process for the new Milano Cortina 2026 emblem, which saw over 871,000 votes cast. Futura, the winning emblem, will become one of the most recognisable symbols in Italy over the next five years. I am confident that it will also be one of the most loved.”
She continued, “It is not just in the high-profile areas like the official emblem that Milano Cortina has progressed but also behind the scenes, with a lot of groundwork being laid in areas like engagement, marketing, operations and venue planning. This hard work has allowed the Milano Cortina organisers to set themselves up to deliver superb Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in 2026. I congratulate the whole Italian team for their efforts despite the challenging circumstances.”
Milano Cortina 2026 President Giovanni Malagò commented, “I am very pleased with the positive view expressed by the IOC Coordination Commission about Milano Cortina 2026. I would like to thank Chair Sari Essayah and all the members of the Commission for their judgement. My appreciation also goes to the Milano Cortina 2026 team who, in these difficult months of the pandemic, carried on their work with great enthusiasm. Let’s continue on this path: many challenges await us, but I am sure that we will be ready for them with the professionalism that we are known for by everyone.”
While the successful emblem selection process that saw just over 871,000 votes cast from 169 countries around the world – with around 75 per cent of entries selecting “Futura” as their favourite – was a major engagement activity for Milano Cortina this year, it is just the beginning of its engagement plans for the country and beyond. Milano Cortina 2026 presented to the Commission an exciting overview of its engagement strategy that will follow the over the coming years, and will engage all generations. This will help to promote the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Milano Cortina 2026 and to spread the Olympic and Paralympic values as people engage with the Games. It will also be an important element when Milano Cortina’s commercial programme gets underway in the near future.
The observation programme conducted by the Milano Cortina team at the FIS World Ski Championships in Cortina d’Ampezzo this winter, which followed the Biathlon World Championships in Antholz last year, allowed the Italian organisers not only to visualise what elite competition would look like in 2026 but also to understand the capacities of the local organisers. This desire to work with experienced event organisers in the Olympic venues will be part of Milano Cortina’s identity and an important step in delivering Games in line with Olympic Agenda 2020 and its New Norm.
Venues were also discussed during the meeting, and the Commission was pleased to hear that a consortium has been chosen to create the masterplan for the Milan Olympic Village.
Concerning the sliding track in Cortina d’Ampezzo, and following the efforts of the Working Group created by the IOC Executive Board to look into this subject, the Coordination Commission once again expressed its concerns with regard to the legacy of the track. It was pointed out that the IOC had made a number of proposals for alternative tracks, none of which were accepted.
On the other hand, the Commission took note that the final plans for the venue are not an investment in a sliding track for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games but are part of a wider entertainment park project that is completely unrelated to the Games. The IOC is therefore not in a position to go any further in this discussion, as this is a sovereign decision of the Veneto Region.
It has been confirmed to the IOC and the Organising Committee that this outlay will not form part of the investment budget for the Olympic and Paralympic Games Milano Cortina 2026. The track will therefore only be used by the Organising Committee for the duration of the Games. Before and after the Games, the venue will be under the sole authority of the region and will not be run by the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) or the Milano Cortina 2026 Organising Committee.
Discussions are continuing on the Speed Skating Oval, which was also highlighted by the IOC’s Evaluation Commission in its pre-election report.
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