Toronto Wins 2015 Pan American Games – Canadian City to Welcome 10,000 Athletes from 42 Countries, 250,000 Visitors
The City of Toronto, Canada has been chosen to host the 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games. The decision was made today by the Pan American Sport Organization (PASO) in Guadalajara, Mexico. “We are thrilled,” said Toronto 2015 Bid Chair, the Hon. David Peterson.
“We would like to thank PASO and in particular, PASO President, Mario Vasquez Rana for having confidence in us and allowing us this great honor. We will work hard to stage the best Pan Am Games ever.”
The Pan American Games are among the premium amateur athletic competitions in the world. Toronto 2015 is expected to attract 10,000 participants and 250,000 visitors from the 42 participating countries in North, South and Central America and the Caribbean.
“We look forward to welcoming the PASO family and athletes from across the Americas and Caribbean to Toronto in 2015,” said Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty. “In fact, we hope they’ll stay a few weeks to enjoy a province that offers a non-stop summer of fun and excitement.”
“Canada is excited to be chosen to host the Americas in 2015. Canada has a successful history of hosting major international sport events, and we will host a world-class event,” said the Honorable Gary Lunn, Minister of State (Sport). “Hosting the 2015 Games will bring people from across the Americas to celebrate their passion for sport.”
Situated on the Great Lakes in the heart of North America, Toronto is Canada’s largest city and capital of Ontario, Canada’s largest province. More than 200 million people live within a three-hour flight or one-day drive of the city, with 30 direct flights to PASO countries on 15 airlines.
“I’m pleased that we will be able to host everyone to Toronto in 2015 and to make them feel welcome,” said Toronto Mayor David Miller. “Torontonians speak more than 140 languages and dialects and we will make every athlete and visitor feel at home. Those who have never been to Toronto will discover how much our city has to offer. We have cultural institutions designed by celebrated architects, world-class theatre, a beautiful waterfront, and thousands of acres of parkland and green space.“
Toronto has been recognized internationally for its superb quality of life. The Economist magazine ranked the city of soaring skyscrapers and vibrant cosmopolitan neighborhoods as the fifth “most livable” city in the world. The 215-city Mercer survey cited Toronto the safest city in the Western Hemisphere.
Toronto was chosen as host site over competitors Bogota, Colombia and Lima, Peru. The winning city’s $1.4-billion plan is built around a core of existing and proven world-class facilities used for professional sports, six new athletic venues and a well-designed, sustainable athlete’s village on Toronto’s waterfront. New venues include a stadium for athletics, indoor velodrome, Canadian Sports Institute facility and Aquatics Centre, as well as two additional 50-meter pools.
“For us, the Games’ legacy of new competition and training facilities for Ontario’s and indeed Canada’s athletes is most important,” said Michael Chambers, President of the Canadian Olympic Committee which formally submitted the bid. “They will provide much needed new and improved training and competition opportunities for high-performance athletes in and around the Toronto area, and provide valuable community resources for promoting physical fitness and health, especially among our youth.”
The Pan Am Games are a major international multi-sport event, held every four years for athletes of the 42 PASO member nations. The Pan American Games consists of all Summer Olympic sports, plus other non-Olympic events, and serve as an Olympic-qualifier for a number of participating sports. The Toronto 2015 Pan American Games will take place July 10-26 and the Parapan American Games August 7-14. The last edition of the games was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in July 2007 and the next is for Guadalajara, Mexico in October 2011.