Reno-Tahoe-Vegas 2030? Not As Crazy As It Sounds

Jake Rubnitz | | Industry NewsIndustry NewsOlympicsOlympics
Could the Olympics be returning to Squaw? (Photo: Nicole Denny)

Northern Nevada and Tahoe are looking to put together a strong Olympic bid for 2030. In order to do that they are enlisting the help of Las Vegas. The Reno Tahoe Winter Games Coalition had been working for years to put together a bid for 2026, but with Los Angeles being awarded the 2024 games they are now focusing on 2030.

The Coalition believes it can apply the new IOC 2020 reforms that allow for a more spread out venue and encourage using existing facilities for their bid. Los Angeles was an appealing venue in part because of its large number of existing venues.

Additionally, the IOC has already told potential 2026 bid cities to use existing facilities even if they are across international borders. That is where Las Vegas comes in; the city already has 4 arenas within 4  miles of each other.

The T-Mobile arena with Las Vegas in the Background (Photo: Tom Donoghue)

“The Orleans, the new T-Mobile Arena where the Golden Knights are playing, the MGM Grand Garden Arena and the (UNLV) Thomas and Mack, Where’s another city that has four arenas within four miles of each other?”– John Killoran, Reno Tahoe Winter Games Comission

Reno-Tahoe certainly has the mountains to host another Olympics (Photo: Lennar)

Las Vegas would host the indoor ice events and Reno-Tahoe would handle the skiing and sliding events. The two areas are about 450 miles apart or a 7-hour drive, but only an hour flight. It is a sizeable distance but it’s not a radically new concept, last winter games in Sochi saw all the indoor events being held on the coast, while the skiing and sliding were held in the mountains.

“Those were a little closer than Vegas and Reno-Tahoe, but is still was spread out. You still had to travel a significant amount of time to get from one venue to another.”– David Wise on the set upof the Sochi Games

Whether or not you are for or against the games returning to the Tahoe area, you have to acknowledge that the addition of Vegas creates an enticing bid for the IOC. It combines the natural beauty, mountains, and Olympic history of the Reno-Tahoe- Squaw area with the showmanship and infrastructure of Vegas. The biggest obstacle in the way is the distance between Tahoe and Vegas. Denver, Lake Placid, and Salt Lake are also considering bids for 2030.

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