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thirdday2002

Summer Olympics in Nashville

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I found this article on the Tennessean website this morning. I thought it was a cool discussion about the push in the late 80's for the 1996 games, which I guess I was too young to remember. Maybe the Olympics could be a reality in Nashville someday! http://tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/articl.../607190418/1002

Well, they could sure play up the "Athens of the South" theme. Selection committees seem to like things like that. Maybe that's why we need more classical revival buildings constructed, to play up that connection :D . (cmon New Towner, you know you like that justification!!) Come to think of it, with that connection, we might just make a good enough case...

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We don't have near enough facilities for it. We'd have use stadiums across the state, and still would have trouble with the sailing. It would definately be interesting to see how they would do it though.

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I hate to put a damper on the conversation, but there is almost NO chance that Nashville would host the Olympics in the even forseable future. There are FAR to many cities much larger, better equiped, and have more international recognition than Nashville. Think about it; NYC hasn't hosted, Chicago hasn't hosted, San Francisco hasn't hosted, lots of others in the US larger than us haven't hosted. As well, the heat would be simply unbearable for the atheletes. As well, the IOC is focusing on going to Africa as soon as possable, they'd also like to go to South America. Really, can you see Nashville beating out Rio de Janerio for the Olympics?

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I remember that very well. In fact, Billy Payne, who led the push for Atlanta's bid, got his inspiration from Nashville's expressed desire to bid for the games (I believe former mayor Dick Fulton was a big champion of the possible bid). He said he read about it in the Sunday AJC and midway through church, he whispered into his wife's ear "If a podunk town like Nashville can put in a bid, then Atlanta sure as hell can too." I remember it b/c I had just moved to Nashville. I'm pretty sure that Nashville did in fact make a bid but was shut out early by the US selection committee.

I think Nashville got a little bit of comeuppance when the games were over, the reviews for Atlanta were dismal. Among so many other things, the city whored itself with hundreds of tacky commercial tents and promotions all around the downtown venues. It was enough for the IOC to tighten up their sponsorship requirements in all future games. It was fairly embarrassing. I guess some of you recall my earlier posts that I am one of the Atlantans who regret that we ever held the games.

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I won't disagree that there are many larger cities that could host the olympic games. But why is city population an issue? Is NYC not bigger than London or Paris? San Fran and Minneapolis were bigger than Atlanta in 1990. I think population has very little to do with it.

Now lets compare to Atlanta 1996. What facilities did Atlanta have in 1990 that we don't have today? NONE! Atlanta had a mixed use football/baseball stadium, an arena for hockey/basketball teams, and the facilities on the campuses of Georgia Tech and Georgia State.

What does Nashville have? A Football stadium, an arena for hockey/basketball, and the facilities on the campuses of Vanderbilt and Tennessee State.

Atlanta used UGA's stadium for Soccer; We can use Neyland

Atlanta used Savannah for Sailing... well maybe we can too!

The only big difference I see is that Atlanta built an indoor football stadium that also was large enough to host Basketball and Gymnastics. We would have to figure out a way to do that. Possibly figure out a way to dome LP field and host both events their under the roof; because of course the Titans would move into olympic stadium after the games.

Baseball is no longer an Olympic sport primarily because the facilities for baseball are useless after the olympic games except in major american cities. So we won't have to retrofit the then-30 year old First Tennesse ballpark for increased attendance.

For the other olympic sports, we can use and help re-develop facilities at Vanderbilt and TSU. The big problem for us is that unlike Atlanta, Vanderbilt is a private school and tax dollars benefiting a private school could be a big no-no

Outside of facilties, I think we have the perfect infrastructure to host the olympics. We have lodging at Opryland and scattered through town. We have 3 major interstates to connect events. I think we'd be a longshot, but I also think it would be a mistake for Nashville not to try again in the near future. We are the best suited city in the south to host the Olympics, so 40 years after the last southern olympics, it should be time for another go-around.

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we'd need some kind of mass transit option. Atlanta had MARTA, and if I remember correctly, they dumped a truckload of money into it just to prepare for the games.

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Well, they could sure play up the "Athens of the South" theme. Selection committees seem to like things like that. Maybe that's why we need more classical revival buildings constructed, to play up that connection :D . (cmon New Towner, you know you like that justification!!) Come to think of it, with that connection, we might just make a good enough case...

We most definitely do not want more Classical Revival buildings in Nashville. We most definitely do want a lot more Classical buildings in Nashville. I'll explain the difference if you want me to, but I have done it so often at this point I am worried about driving other forumers off a cliff by repeating that particular chapter of A Brief Introduction to the History of Architecture.

And turning Nashville into a theme park, even if the theme is worthy of study and aspiration, is kind of a horrifying prospect as well.

Though of course, the fact that Nashville is and has always aspired to be The Athens of the South could not, and should not, be ignored in an Olympic bid.

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This may be more doable than you might think at first. :shades:

And there may be more win/win scenarios for we promoters of livable, sustainable communities than we realize.

Existing Sports Venues

LP Field (Titans home, add seats in end zone areas for 75,000 total) - large enough for opening and closing ceremonies and soccer, may not be suitable for track and field events though.

Downtown Arena - 19,000 for gymnastics

Vandy's Memorial Gym - 14,000 for basketball

Vandy's Dudley Field - 39,000 for soccer

Memphis Liberty Bowl - 62,000 for soccer

Knoxville/UT Neyland Stadium - 100,000 soccer

TSU Arena - 9,000 for basketball

Lipscomb U - 5,000; indoor team events

Belmont - 5,000; weight lifting

Municipal Auditorium - 8,000 (Indoor team events)

New sounds Stadium (if Baseball is still in, otherwise use for outdoor team sports)- 12,000 baseball (Also, Greer Stadium (10,000), Vandy Baseball (expand to 5,000), new MTSU Baseball stadium)

Austin Peay Arena - 10.000 (40 miles from downtown), Wrestling

MTSU Arena - 12,000 (30 miles, for basketball)

Warner Park - Equestrian events

Natchez Trace Parkway - Cycling Road race

Cape Hatteras, NC - sailing

Ocoee River, Polk County Tenn - whitewater

Priest Lake - crew

Nashville Superspeedway - ??

New Venus Needed

New stadium ? - for Major league baseball later. 50,000

Swimming and Diving - (Rutherford County to provide?) need stadium seating

Velodrome for cycling - (Clarksville to provide?)

Archery and others - where ever

Softball - new TSU facility

Tennis - (Williamson County to build?)

Housing

Private/Public partnership - City/State provides interest free loans to developers to build out SoBro or East Bank or Germantown with the low rise condo development we all long to see. They need housing for 15,000 atheletes, but a two bedroom condo could sleep 6 - 10, so as few as 1,500 to 2500 units would be required.

Transportation

Most of these venues represent logical temini or destinations for a light rail system or an electric bus rapid transit system utilizing Automatic Vehicle Locaters (AVL) to provide a green light window to the vehicle from the downtown Traffic Operations Office. Commuter rail lines to Murfreesboro and Franklin to be completed.

Hospitality

The tough part; a new convention center will encourage the construction of many new Hotels. Otherwise, Atlanta used college dorms and apartments fro visitors

Bottom Line

It would be expensive, but not as bad as it may seem at first glance. We are fortunate to have lots of adequate facilities and new facility requirements are minimal assuming LP Field is adequate for opening ceremonies and Track and Field, and the nearby counties would be willing to finance some venues which would be used for future national and world championship events. A world class Tennis facility in Williamson County? Seems like a no-brainer to me.

The big ticket would be transportation, but that has to be done sometime anyway. The City would be out some on the SoBro buildout, but would recoup from the money the Olympics make.

So, let's do it! :yahoo:

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Well, that's very interesting, and you put a lot of thought into it. It's possible, but would be extremely hard to manage. And I don't think LP Field is big enough. By this time, we would have built another stadium for the Titans, though, which would be bigger, but if you think about it, Beijing's stadium will hold 200,000. I don't think this could work in the near future. At least not in our lives, but it's fun to think about it and make up plans.

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Well, that's very interesting, and you put a lot of thought into it. It's possible, but would be extremely hard to manage. And I don't think LP Field is big enough. By this time, we would have built another stadium for the Titans, though, which would be bigger, but if you think about it, Beijing's stadium will hold 200,000. I don't think this could work in the near future. At least not in our lives, but it's fun to think about it and make up plans.

Yeah, Beijing may ruin it for everyone by setting the bar so high. Only a few Cities in Countries run by totalitarian governments will be able to provide the resources needed to build such extravagant venues at the expense of their citizens.

However, if the Olympic Committee comes to their senses and tries to keep the scale of this event at a reasonable level, Nashville ought to at least think about it.

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Add the Williamson County Agricultural Center on your list for an indoor equestrian event. It's actually a pretty nice venue for that

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i say we make our own olympics. if you don't wanna let us host, then who needs ya. this way we could do it on our own terms. then again, we'd also need to convince everybody outside of nashville to go along with it, but those are just minor details. :P honestly, as much as i'd love to see us host it, i don't see it happening in my lifetime.

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Add the Williamson County Agricultural Center on your list for an indoor equestrian event. It's actually a pretty nice venue for that

I don't think it's big enough, but it could easily be expanded. That's a good idea.

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Yeah, Beijing may ruin it for everyone by setting the bar so high. Only a few Cities in Countries run by totalitarian governments will be able to provide the resources needed to build such extravagant venues at the expense of their citizens.

However, if the Olympic Committee comes to their senses and tries to keep the scale of this event at a reasonable level, Nashville ought to at least think about it.

Many people thought the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta "ruined" the chances of the US getting it again. Most other countries felt that it was way to commercial (too many advertisments everywhere and on everything). I dont know if Salt Lake was awarded the winter games before or after the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

I also read an article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution that stated that most people in Atlanta/Georgia feel that hosting the Olympics may not have been worth it. Before the Olympics everyone thought they would put Atlanta on the map as a major international city, but as the years have passed Atlanta's reputation, on a global scale, has pretty much remaied the same.

I know first hand the the 1996 Olympics were not as much of a boon to the tourism industry in Atlanta or Chattanooga as was expected. In Atlanta hotels had a huge spike and a relatively flat summer, while the AAA warned people to stay away from Chattanooga because of "Olympic" size traffic jams expected on I-75, as well as overflow hotel bookings from Atlanta which never materialized.

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I remember that 1996 was a big down year in revenue for the commercial rafting companies along the Ocoee River because of the folks staying away in droves to avoid the huge crowds which were only in the Polk county river gorge for about a week.

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Transportation was the major problem in Atlanta in '96. My father and I staying in the Olympic Village during the Games (we moved to Nashville some days after the Closing Ceremonies). Now, the Olympics provided us with our own driver, but, once, we decided to take the Train (a.k.a. MARTA) just to see how it was with all the people.

Crowded! It was terrible! People on top of people, even! New York subway system eat your heart out--the number of passengers was uncanny! And, we heard later that the bus system didn't fare any better.

Nashville's biggest issues wouldn't be sports venues and lodging--the IOC, government, and Corporate America would take care of that. Nor, would we have to do anymore building to entertain people once they were here. Circulating the huge population during the Games would be the greatest of our troubles to conquer.

Also, that statement that the Olympics did not do much to boost Atlanta's reputation is totally wrong. One has only to look at the snowballing development that has been happening since shortly after the Olympics to verify it. Sure, Atlanta was host to almost all the Fortune 500 companies prior to the Olympics, but to say that the Olympics didn't affect Atlanta's international/domestic reputation is just foolish.

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Add the Williamson County Agricultural Center on your list for an indoor equestrian event. It's actually a pretty nice venue for that

That would be better fit at the Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville wouldn't it??

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That would be better fit at the Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville wouldn't it??

Actually, the better fit would probably be the Miller Colliseum in Murfreesboro which can hold close to 7,000 people.

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I don't know about the Miller Colliseum, but the Calsonic Arena could work, especially if it was renovated to be a little nicer. That's where the Tennessee Walking Horse Shows are, right, Lexy?

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Yep. Miller is primarily for horse sales.

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Yep. Miller is primarily for horse sales.

NO QUESTIONING!!! WILLIAMSON NEEDS A PIECE OF THE ACTION!!!!!! :D just kidding, lol

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They would have that "piece" though. Where else would people feel safe enough to shop at while visiting Nashville? LOL!!! Just kidding.

I am sure they would have something there like Olympic Lawn Watering or Olympic Office Park Tours. I am sorry. I had to go there. Just kidding with you Frankliner.

LOL!!!

They could do something seriously for the Olympics.

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Actually, the better fit would probably be the Miller Colliseum in Murfreesboro which can hold close to 7,000 people.

Calsonic arena holds 4500, but the outdoor arena holds 30,000. Not to mention over 1700 horse stalls and the practice arena. Its probably the only facility in Middle Tennessee capable of hosting an olympic sized equestrian event. It would have to be renovated as mentioned before though.

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They would have that "piece" though. Where else would people feel safe enough to shop at while visiting Nashville? LOL!!! Just kidding.

I am sure they would have something there like Olympic Lawn Watering or Olympic Office Park Tours. I am sorry. I had to go there. Just kidding with you Frankliner.

LOL!!!

They could do something seriously for the Olympics.

You're in a good mood today, Lexy.

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