Toronto

Rob Ford blasts Toronto 2024 Olympic bid

Rob Ford blasted the idea of Toronto hosting the Olympics on Thursday, calling the Games a “bottomless black hole” of taxpayer money.
Coun. Rob Ford said the city shouldn't bid for the 2024 Olympics and accused Mayor John Tory of trying to speed through the process. (Chris Young/Canadian Press)

Rob Ford blasted the idea of Toronto hosting the Olympics on Thursday, calling the Games a "bottomless black hole".

Toronto has until Sept. 15 to express its interest in bidding for the 2024 Summer Olympics and would later have to submit a formal bid. Toronto Mayor John Tory has been meeting with city stakeholders in advance of the deadline, but has not confirmed whether or not he'll be sending a letter to the International Olympic Committee.

"I cannot emphasize enough how bad of an idea this is," Ford said in a news release issued Thursday afternoon.

Tory, speaking on CBC Radio's Here and Now, said he would add Ford's "pithy" opinion to his list of input and said the councillor had not spoken with him directly about the issue. 

Ford, Toronto's former mayor and now an Etobicoke councillor, said in his statement that he believes there will be cost overruns associated with this summer's Pan and Parapan Am Games, and also questioned how many of the new venues built for the Games would meet Olympic standards in the future.

Ford also criticized Tory for "trying to speed through" the process, saying it goes against the recommendations of city staff.

And Ford questioned what corporate partners would participate if Toronto hosted the Olympics.

Any decision to launch a bid for the Olympics would need council approval.

Los Angeles, Paris-Rome, Budapest and Hamburg all plan to bid on the Games.

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