The heated debate surrounding Calgary’s potential bid on the 2026 Olympics continues.
On August 20, the city released a poll showing that a slim majority are in favour of bidding for a chance to host the 2026 winter games, though many are still calling for a full outline of the costs that would be associated with the events.
The survey was conducted between July 23 and 29 by contacting 500 Calgarians over the phone and asking them a series of question relating to the potential bid.
A combined 53% stated that they support the bid, with 30% strongly supporting and 23% somewhat supporting.
23% of respondents strongly opposed the bid, while another 11% somewhat opposed, leaving the split at 53% to 33%.
13% of respondents remained undecided, and half of those not leaning one way or the other stated that a clear outline of how much hosting or the bid would cost would help them decide.
Just 1% either refused to answer the question or stated that they didn’t know.
Even with the majority of Calgarians surveyed leaning towards support for the bid, a large number of those supporters (33%) were also worried about the potential costs that would come with it, joining the 73% of those opposed who cited cost/taxes as a reason for their opposition.
A statement from the group No YYC Olympics argues that 53% is not enough to move forward with a bid.
“No city has gone ahead with a bid when the ‘for’ and ‘against’ were so equally weighed,” the statement read.
“For the International Olympic Committee to select a city in its competitive bid process, higher support from host city citizens is a key factor. Even though the plebiscite is technically non-binding, weak support is not enough to support a bid.”
The city has plans to put out a plebiscite on November 13 to gauge whether or not Calgary’s population is on board with hosting the Olympics, though the opposition group says if cost information is not supplied soon, there won’t be enough time to properly educate the public before they cast their ballots.
The poll is expected to be discussed at the Council Olympic Oversight meeting on Tuesday beginning at 9 am.