Road To The Olympic Games

Olympics

Plebiscite result 'comes as no surprise' to IOC

The International Olympic Committee had hoped that arguments about the sporting, social and long-term benefits of hosting the Olympic Games would sway the vote.

56.4 per cent of Calgarians voted against the city hosting the 2026 Winter Olympic

A member of the "Yes" campaign reacts to the results of Tuesday's plebiscite. (Jeff McIntosh/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

The International Olympic Committee made a statement following the results of last night's plebiscite where 56.4 per cent of Calgarians voted against the city hosting the 2026 Winter Olympics.   

"The IOC takes note of the decision regarding the candidature of Calgary for the Olympic Winter Games 2026," a spokesperson for the IOC said.

"It comes as no surprise following the political discussions and uncertainties right up until the last few days."

Calgarians vote against bid to host 2026 Winter Olympics:

The No side won with 56.4 per cent of the vote, a total of 304,774 people cast ballots across the city. 3:43

The IOC acknowledged the individuals and organizations that were involved in trying to bring the Winter Games back to Calgary for the first time in 38 years.   

"We understand the disappointment of all those involved in the candidature, especially the Calgary 2026 Committee, the Canadian athletes, who have so enthusiastically been a driving force behind this project, as well as the representatives of the business community, the Paralympic Movement and the members of the First Nations who fought so hard for the Olympic project."

There was a serious final push by many of Canada's Olympians in the days leading up to the plebiscite. They took to social media, determinedly tweeting out reasons why the Games should be in Calgary.

"It is disappointing that the arguments about the sporting, social and long-term benefits of hosting the Olympic Games did not sway the vote," said the IOC spokesperson.

Citizens were asked in the non-binding plebiscite if they wanted to host a Winter Games again. Out of 767,734 eligible voters, 304,774 voted and 171,750 said 'no.'

City council has the final say on whether Calgary proceeds with a bid years after the city hosted the 1988 Winter Olympics.

The results won't be declared official until Friday, with council expected to address the results Monday.

With files from The Canadian Press

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