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Calgary still in the game

Calgary is continuing down the road of bidding for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games, at least until the next off-ramp.

City council voted Monday to spend up to $2 million more on work towards a possible bid.

But only $1 million of that money will be released until it is known what the federal and provincial governments are willing to contribute to a bid. Council wants that answer by early 2018.

"What I heard clearly from members of council is they didn't want to kill this." Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said. "They wanted to move forward, but they also understand that one of the really critical things is we're going to need all three orders of government — federal, provincial and municipal — to agree to move forward.

"This is going to a mutual decision between the three orders of government on whether or not to move forward."

City staff estimates a bid price tag would be between $25 million and $30 million.

Calgary was the host city of the 1988 Winter Olympics.

A project team of city staff and consultants took over the work of the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee, which estimated the cost of hosting the Winter Games at $4.6 billion.

Calgary wants a deeper dive into five areas before it greenlights a bid: capital costs; security; operating costs; finances; financial guarantees.

Council also voted to study venues outside of Calgary as a cost-saving measure, which could mean using Edmonton's facilities or incorporating venues from the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver and Whistler.



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