Thank you for your input.

Online and in-person engagement for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Bid is now closed. In-person and online engagement activities took place between October 2-28. Below you will find a report-back on everything that was heard in this engagement.

What We Heard

Step 1. Overview

This page is also available as plain-text for participants using screen readers or in graphic format.

Welcome to the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Bid Engagement Hub, your online platform for information and engagement about the bid.

Calgarians are being asked to consider whether or not Calgary should host the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (the Games).


From idea

The idea began in 2016 when The Calgary Sport Tourism Authority (CSTA) recommended The City explore a bid to host the Games. The CSTA felt there were considerable benefits of bidding for and hosting the Games. It also saw the potential that the Games could align closely with The City’s long-term goals around economic opportunity, sport development, social development, and cultural enrichment.

As a result, City Council funded the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee (CBEC) to determine whether a bid would be feasible. Based on CBEC’s work, The City of Calgary, Province of Alberta and Government of Canada, funded a Bid Corporation, called Calgary 2026.


To concept

Calgary 2026 then developed and presented its Draft Hosting Plan Concept (draft hosting plan) to City Council. The draft hosting plan is a proposed approach that includes projected costs and infrastructure required for Calgary to host the Games.

To support City Council in its consideration of the draft hosting plan, The City was directed to undertake an analysis of the draft hosting plan and a potential bid.


To engagement

As part of its process in considering whether or not to submit a bid, City Council wants to engage with Calgarians to understand their views on this guiding question: Will hosting the Games help or hinder Calgary's future?


Online, engage on this platform to help The City understand your views. In-person, attend our in-person events around the city. Engagement toolkit, host a conversation with your community.

We've created five topics of conversation to structure the information we share and the questions we ask in this engagement program.

These topics are high-level categories of Calgarians’ comments, concerns and interests we heard in The City’s 2018 Citizen Perspectives Survey Report. Go to Tab 2 to learn more about these topics of conversation:

Community, Costs, Economy, Venues and Facilities, and Environment.

What's next?

City Council will consider a range of information before making its decision. Go to the platform's tab 2 to learn more and go to tab 3 to help City Council understand what you see as the key issues, concerns and opportunities of the potential bid.

Reporting, Voting, City Council decision
Please take 10-15 minutes to learn more and provide your input by using the tabs at the top of the page .

Step 2. Learn about the proposed bid

Your resource for neutral and balanced information about the potential Games bid.

The City has analyzed the Draft Hosting Plan Concept (draft hosting plan) prepared by Calgary 2026, and wants to share balanced and neutral information with you.

Go through the drop-down questions below to find key information, benefits and risks of potentially hosting the Games grouped by the topics of conversation. Check back for new and updated information as we learn more.

These topics are based on the results from the 2018 Citizen Perspectives Survey Report released in August, including the specific information Calgarians wanted to know about the potential bid for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Topic summary documents can also be downloaded from the Additional Resources section in the right sidebar.


1. Community

When we think about community, we mean building an inclusive, safe, accessible, inspiring, healthy and prosperous community for all citizens.

The draft hosting plan proposes a housing plan that invests in affordable housing for low and moderate-income households, including:

  • Affordable housing developments in Calgary and Canmore
  • Subsidized seniors’ housing development
  • Potential for Indigenous peoples’ housing
  • Potential expansion to student housing

The draft hosting plan includes venue designs to make it easier for people of all abilities to enter, leave and move around. Upgrades to the Games venues would make them more accessible. The Paralympic Winter Games also promotes an inclusive community by creating awareness about the importance of accessibility for all Calgarians.

The draft hosting plan includes many cultural activities. All Olympic and Paralympic Games must feature a Cultural Olympiad, which would begin a few years before the Games and may include cultural events throughout the city, province and country.

Cultural events as part of the Games include:

  • The Games’ opening and closing ceremonies
  • Medal ceremonies
  • Torch relays
  • Live entertainment
  • Community and sporting events

Planned live sites could have cultural elements that are free and affordable. These events could include large screens for people to watch live coverage of the Games, entertainment stages with artists, as well as recreational, cultural and community activities. Local and national talent would be featured.

The draft hosting plan describes ways to increase volunteerism and community spirit, by bringing people together around a common goal. The Games will require thousands of volunteers, including potential volunteers from underrepresented groups like new Canadians, youth, cultural communities and Indigenous communities.

The Games have the potential to inspire a new generation of volunteers across Calgary. In the past, our community spirit has been highlighted through a number of events including the 1988 Games, Grey Cup Finals, and recovering from the 2013 flood.

  • Focusing on and investing in the Games may reduce investment in other Council priorities or City lines of services
  • Potential impacts on community not-for-profits: focusing on the Games may distract businesses from other community priorities, resulting in lower investment and sponsorship
  • The Games may draw volunteers away from existing community volunteer opportunities
  • May impact The City’s future operating and capital budgets
  • City costs related to hosting live sites and entertainment programming are not yet determined

The City is reviewing the draft hosting plan to see how well it fits with Citizen Priorities, Council Directives, City policies, strategies and long-term capital and financial plans.

We want to see if the Games match with our views of a community and whether they will help us achieve our vision for Calgary as a great place to make a living, a great place to make a life. Our common purpose is: Making life better every day.

Imagine Calgary is our long-range plan on how we’re growing Calgary.

The Council Directives directly linked to this topic are: A city of inspiring neighbourhoods, A healthy and green city, and A prosperous city.

Ready to engage? Please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

2. Venues and Facilities

This information explores the venues and facilities proposed in Calgary 2026’s Draft Hosting Plan Concept that would be upgraded and built to host the Games.

The draft hosting plan proposes upgrades to a number of existing facilities. The proposed upgrades allow these facilities to continue serving Calgary’s recreation and athletic community into the future. The following facilities would be upgraded to host events:

  • Olympic Oval: long-track speed skating
  • McMahon Stadium: opening and closing ceremonies
  • Winsport sliding track: Luge, skeleton and bobsled
  • Winsport ski hill: half-pipe, aerials, big air, moguls, slope style
  • Saddledome: hockey
  • BMO Centre: International Broadcasting Centre
  • Big Four building: Main Press Centre
  • Max Bell arena: training
  • Canmore Nordic Centre: cross-country skiing and biathlon
  • Nakiska Ski Resort: downhill ski events

Two new competition venues are proposed in the draft hosting plan:

Multi-sport complex/fieldhouse

During the Games, the proposed centre would host figure skating, short track speed skating, and wheelchair curling. After the Games, the proposed multi-sport complex would allow for community use, host regional, provincial and national competitions, and provide:

  • 400m indoor track
  • In-field for throwing and jumping sports
  • FIFA-sized soccer field
  • Basketball courts
  • Volleyball courts
  • Badminton courts
  • Batting cages
  • Climbing wall
  • Dry-land training space
  • Removable spectator seating for events

Mid-size/community arena

During the Games, the proposed 5,000-seat, two-ice sheet arena would host some hockey games, the para-hockey games and training.

After the Games, the proposed arena would host regional, provincial and national competitions. It would also be used by athletes and the community for training, competition and recreation, giving Calgary two new ice sheets.

Benefits

  • A multi-sport complex/fieldhouse is a top priority in several City plans and aligns with the proposed redevelopment of Foothills Athletic Park
  • The mid-size/community arena is part of the Foothills Athletic Park Concept Plan
  • Upgrades extend the life of existing facilities, improve access for Calgarians and help keep Calgary as a destination for winter sport
  • Hosting the Games means fast-tracking investment in existing and new sport, recreation and community facilities
  • New and upgraded venues provide event-ready infrastructure. This allows us to host national and international sport competitions, conferences and events, which can generate economic benefits and potential revenues
  • Proposed legacy fund to operate and maintain legacy facilities and to fund initiatives like youth and Indigenous programming

Risks

  • Investing in Games-related infrastructure potentially means fewer capital dollars to invest in other priorities
  • Investment in Games-related infrastructure is not currently in The City’s One Calgary (2019-2022) four-year budgeting and investment plans, which Council is reviewing in November
  • Funding for operating and maintenance costs associated with the two new facilities (mid-size community arena and multi-sport complex) will need to be confirmed and determined

During the Olympic Games, 4,900 athletes and team officials would stay in Calgary, Canmore, Kananaskis and Whistler. The draft hosting plan proposes that a majority of Olympic athletes would stay in Calgary.

The majority of Paralympic athletes would stay in Canmore, with remaining athletes staying in Calgary.

Friends, family and vacation rental sites have housed spectators and tourists for past Games and can potentially be used in 2026 as well.

The City is reviewing the draft hosting plan to see how well it fits with Citizen Priorities, Council Directives, City policies, strategies and our long-term capital and financial plans.

The City has six Council-approved principles for investing in infrastructure (buildings, roads, etc.):

  • Support the delivery of City of Calgary services, at approved service levels
  • Promote the well-being of communities, environment, and economy
  • Build an adaptable, resilient and smart city
  • Enhance the long-term value of City assets
  • Integrate, coordinate and optimize The City’s investment
  • Optimize financing and funding sources

The Council Directives directly linked to this topic are:A healthy and green city and A prosperous city.

Ready to engage? Please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

3. Environment

Environmental sustainability is a priority for City Council and The City of Calgary, and addressed in Calgary 2026’s Draft Hosting Plan Concept. Environmental sustainability is about actions to keep our communities, air, water and land healthy today and for the future.

The draft hosting plan proposes a number of ways to protect the environment, including:

  • Use energy and transportation for the Games that will not harm the environment
  • Reuse, reduce and recycle as much as possible before, during and after the Games
  • Plan a Games’ food program based on Alberta’s agriculture and cuisine
  • Build Indigenous knowledge into ways to connect to and protect the land
  • Protect the natural environment, wildlife habitat and routes when building or upgrading Games venues
  • Grouping existing and new venues in four main areas/clusters to help reduce travel times, costs and impacts of vehicles on the environment
  • A zero-waste goal that aims to send minimal waste to Calgary’s landfills
  • Transportation planning would promote a lower carbon footprint, including mass transit solutions, active transportation (biking, walking), and low or no emission bus and fleet vehicles, where possible
  • Venue locations take advantage of existing infrastructure, reducing the need to build additional, Games-specific infrastructure
  • Put existing and new venues in four main areas to help reduce travel times, costs and the effect of vehicles on the environment
  • Requiring spectators and workforce to use public transit during the Games in The City of Calgary will lower the carbon footprint and support public health
  • Utilizing and sourcing local and sustainable services, goods, equipment and materials, which reduces transportation distance and waste
  • Hosting an event of this size will have some impacts on the environment
  • The draft hosting plan does not remove all the effects on the environment but aims to reduce them
  • Actions planned to address environmental sustainability can’t be fully implemented

The City has reviewed the draft hosting plan and it is in line with its Environmental Policy and Climate Resilience strategy.

The Council Directives directly linked to this topic are: A healthy and green city and A well-run city.

Ready to engage? Please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

4. Economy

This information explores a cost-benefit analysis, which also includes tourism and the overall reputation of Calgary on the world stage.

The City of Calgary has commissioned a cost-benefit analysis of the draft hosting plan. Information from this report will be made public mid-October.

  • Supports Calgary Economic Development’s 10-year Economic Strategy by making Calgary a hub for national and international investment
  • Potential to increase and attract investment and create jobs
  • Rise in tourism during the Games and potentially after
  • Promotes Calgary internationally with events leading up to and during the Games:
    • According to the Vancouver 2010 Global Television and Online Media Overview, the 2010 Games were shown on television in more than 220 countries. 1.8 billion viewers saw at least one minute of Vancouver 2010 coverage on television, 48 percent of the potential global audience
    • In Canada, 98.3 per cent of the population (32.9 million viewers) saw at least some of the coverage on TV
  • International awareness of Calgary may lead to a rise in investment, helping our economy grow in new ways and with new ideas
  • Calgary can continue to host regional, national and international sport events and host new larger events
  • Given the size and complexity of the Games, not all economic risks may be eliminated and would therefore need to be closely managed
  • The return on investment in economic, social and environmental terms may not be perceived as being enough for Calgarians
  • Determining potential return on investment is difficult because the return on investment is often easier to see years after a Games ends
  • Future economic climates are unknown and may impact costs and revenues
  • Reports on past Games in other cities have different opinions on the economic benefit of hosting a Games

The City is reviewing the draft hosting plan to see how well it fits with Citizen Priorities, Council Directives, City policies, strategies and long-term capital and financial plans.

The Council Directives directly linked to this topic are: A well-run city and A prosperous city.

Ready to engage? Please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

5. Costs

This information explores the projected costs of hosting the Games, which are included in Calgary 2026’s Draft Hosting Plan Concept

The City is currently negotiating a cost sharing agreement with the Government of Alberta and Government of Canada.

More information about sharing costs with other orders of government will be released once it is available.

The draft hosting plan projects the Games to cost $5.2 billion, in 2018 dollars. Funding will come from two primary sources:

  • Private: $2.2 billion
    • Private funding will come from the International Olympic Committee, sponsorship, ticket sales, merchandising, licensing, and other sources
  • Public: $3.0 billion
    • Public funding will pay for the Games facilities and housing, the Paralympics, and others costs, such as a legacy fund

There are two types of costs included in the draft hosting plan

  • Costs to build new or upgrade existing venues
  • Costs to plan and run the Games, and after they are over, to support community programming and legacy facilities

The City is reviewing the draft hosting plan to see how well it fits with Citizen Priorities, Council Directives, City policies, strategies and our long-term capital and financial plans. We are reviewing if the Games provide an opportunity to achieve Council goals or if the Games would pose a challenge that may deter and/or delay achieving those goals.

The Council Directive directly linked to this topic is: A well-run city.

  • The City would get funding from other orders of government to build new and upgrade current venues. This funding may not be available otherwise
  • The upgrades or construction of new venues already planned by The City would happen years earlier than if they were to go through the regular government funding process
  • A legacy fund to operate and maintain legacy facilities and to fund initiatives like youth and Indigenous programming
  • The Games are eight years away. Events can occur that result in changes to costs.
  • The $2.2 billion in private investment (made up of the International Olympic Committee contribution, ticketing, sponsorship and licensing) may not be achieved
  • Future economic climates are unknown and may impact costs and revenues

The City is reviewing the proposed draft hosting plan to see how well it fits with Citizen Priorities, Council Directives, City policies, strategies and our long-term capital and financial plans.

The Council Directive directly linked to this topic is: A well-run city.

Ready to engage? Please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

6. General

The Calgary Sport Tourism Authority (CSTA) recommended in 2016 that The City explore a bid to host the Games. The CSTA felt there were benefits of bidding for and hosting the Games. It also saw the potential that the Games could align closely to The City’s long-term goals around economic development, sport development, social development, and cultural enrichment.

As a result, City Council funded the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee (CBEC) to determine feasibility of a bid. As a result, The City of Calgary, Province of Alberta and Government of Canada funded a Bid Corporation, called Calgary 2026.

Calgary 2026 developed and presented its Draft Hosting Plan Concept to City Council. The City has provided City Council and the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Assessment Committee with regular updates. The City continues to analyze this draft hosting plan and the opportunities, benefits, costs and risks of a potential bid.

The City Secretariat presented a report to City Council in September with its analysis of the draft hosting plan.

Refer to this infographic to see who is involved and how your feedback fits in the decision-making process.

Refer to this infographic to see the proposed Olympic and Paralympic numbers in the draft hosting plan.

Your feedback is vital. When you feel ready, please provide your input in the Step 3 tab at the top of the page.

Step 3. Share your comments and concerns

Have your say, your engagement platform to share your comments and concerns about how a Games could impact our city.

Through this engagement program, we are seeking your input on this guiding question: Will hosting the Games help or hinder Calgary's future?

This information will help City Council understand what Calgarians see as the key issues, concerns and opportunities of the potential bid.

Your feedback is vital to helping City Council decide whether or not to submit a bid to host the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

Please take 10 - 15 minutes to have your say in our questions below.


Part 1/3: What are your views? These questions will give us an idea about whether or not you think Calgary should submit a bid for the Games.

Q1. Do you think Calgary should submit a bid for the Games?

I want The City of Calgary to submit a bid to host the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

This poll has concluded.

Strongly agree
46% (5989 votes)
Agree
2% (301 votes)
I don't have an opinion
0% (30 votes)
Disagree
5% (616 votes)
Strongly disagree
44% (5725 votes)
I am undecided
2% (255 votes)
Total Votes: 12916

Please reload this page to see the poll results.


Q2. What do you see as the top benefit or risk from Calgary hosting the Games?

We’re interested in understanding why you think our city should or should not submit a bid for the Games, including reasons that are outside of the five topics of conversation.

29 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Basically, I distrust the IOC and feel that we will end up losing millions or even a billion + dollars & Homeless ppl pushed aside ”

29 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“The larger share of the money is spent on persistent buildings and infrastructure that are needed and will be well used by Calgarians.”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Calgary doesn't have enough infrastructure to handle current population let alone increase during olympics (transit, roads, police, medical)”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Self anointed elites who indiscriminately waste public resources have never created anything “vibrant” or “world class” vote NO ”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Unquantifiable adjectives like “vibrant” & “world class” are used to describe outcomes that some want to see but not pay for.HYPE ”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Olympics are a business.Let business people finance and operate sports & entertainment ventures.Let the tax mules rest! ”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“High profile vanity projects, arrogant politicians and benefit-seeking special interests are a recipe for fleeced taxpayers. ”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Advantages accrue to select and politically well connected groups while everyone bears the expense. Concentrated benefits and diffused costs”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Olympics create no new economic benefit.Redistributes existing resources unfairly and inefficiently.Taxpayers should get to vote twice!”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Not a place for scarce public resources.Govt needs to focus only on those important roles appropriate for govt. I vote NO”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“The cost, broad doping & cheating regardless of the oaths claimed at the start of the games has broken the spirit and value. I”

28 October, 2018

Anonymous says:

“Too expensive for Calgary taxpayers. ”


Part 2/3: These questions will help us understand what’s important to you and focuses on 5 topics: Community, Venues and Facilities, Environment, Economy, and Costs

These topics are high-level categories of Calgarians' comments, concerns and interests we heard in the 2018 Citizen Perspectives Survey results released in August.

The survey was commissioned by The City to gain a baseline understanding of citizens' attitudes and perceptions towards a potential bid for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.


Please rank how important you feel each topic should be in The City’s consideration of whether or not to submit a bid. Drag the topics from the box on the left to the box on the right, placing the most important at the top and least important at the bottom.

  1. Community #
  2. Venues and facilities #
  3. Environment #
  4. Economy #
  5. Costs #

Share your thoughts in the textbox below or skip to the next topic.

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Share your thoughts in the textbox below or skip to the next topic.

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Share your thoughts in the textbox below or skip to the next topic.

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Share your thoughts in the textbox below or skip to the next topic.

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Share your thoughts in the textbox below or skip to the next question.

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The survey form is now closed. Thanks for your contributions.


Part 3/3: Who are you? These questions will help us reach and hear from a more representative range of Calgarians to inform City Council’s decision on whether or not to proceed with a bid for the Games.

Please self-identify as you feel comfortable.

This information helps to ensure we're hearing from a representative range of participants.

Q7. To help The City understand the views represented in this engagement program and target outreach efforts, we ask for the following information.

I self-identify as (check all that apply):

The survey form is now closed. Thanks for your contributions.

You're all done.

Thank you for your time and valued input!


Want to stay involved?

  • Sign up for email updates in the right sidebar
  • Check back to this hub as we update more information
  • Join us at upcoming engagement events listed in the right sidebar
  • Download the toolkit from the right sidebar to host a conversation in your community
  • Stay tuned for the What We Heard report coming in November 2018
  • Learn more about Calgary 2026's Draft Hosting Plan Concept here
  • Participate in November's non-binding vote

  • For more information, resources and related reports, go to The City of Calgary's website on the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.