Sigulda to buy land for potential Olympic village

The local authority of the central Latvian town of Sigulda will buy a land plot from the local Evangelical Lutheran parish for a development project that might become an Olympic village, LETA was told at the Sigulda local authority.

The planned Olympic village would be within a walking distance from the Sigulda Bobsleigh and Luge Track and the Sigulda Sports Center.

The Swedish capital Stockholm has signed a cooperation memorandum with Latvia on a joint Swedish/Latvian bid to host the 2026 Winter Olympics. If Stockholm wins the rights to host the games, the bobsleigh, skeleton and luge events would be held in Sigulda.

“With the number of residents in the region of Sigulda growing, the local authority’s most pressing challenges include housing availability, infrastructure development and the provision of high quality education. The proposed development plan is therefore connected with Sigulda’s long-term development regardless of the outcome of the Olympic bid, which will be announced in October 2019,” said Sigulda mayor Ugis Mitrevics.

Aldons Vrublevskis, president of the Latvian Olympic Committee (LOC), noted that the opportunity to join Stockholm’s Olympic bid would speed up decision-making on the renovation and upgrading of the Sigulda winter sports facilities and meeting local residents’ needs.

“The land plot the local authority is planning to purchase is meant primarily for providing the necessary housing, which Sigulda would have to do sooner or later. Now, there is the opportunity to showcase the town as a modern winter sports center that can even serve as a venue for Olympic games and to solve the issues of long-term housing and education infrastructure development quickly and effectively,” Vrublevskis said.

On Thursday, the Sigulda regional council approved the plan to purchase an approximately 5.5 hectares large land plot for the potential Olympic village in Sigulda.

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