Madrid 2016’s Games vision was based upon creating an unforgettable Games-time experience, which would be second to none. In parallel with this, Madrid wanted to use the Games-time planning process to deliver lasting benefits to the people and communities of Madrid and Spain. Madrid 2016 also intended to extend its “hand of friendship” to inspire the world’s people to reach out to each other in different ways, encouraging social interaction and promoting social cohesion. It wanted to provide a “human touch” to deliver its aspiration for people to share the feelings and emotions of the athletes.
The Madrid 2016 bid provided an offer of sport and venues that was one of the most compact in Olympic history, with all the competition venues in the city except one (shooting, situated 21km from the city centre) located within a 10-kilometre radius of the city centre, with easy access from the airport and by road and public transport. Madrid’s concept for the Games involved turning the whole city into one Olympic Village, promoting a Spanish celebratory feel and allowing everyone to share an unforgettable Games-time experience. The competition venues for 77 per cent of the nominated sports already existed, and new venues would be built only if they formed part of Madrid’s long-term plans for development within two key zones in the city – the Core Zone and the River Zone.
Tokyo 2016 wanted to stage the Games in the very heart of the city, totally integrating them within the life of the city, and providing the entire community with a vibrant sense of participation. All of Tokyo was to become a field of play, and the Games experience was to permeate Tokyo, Japan and the international community. The Games were to provide the opportunity to bring people together from different communities, young and old, local and international, in a shared experience of the very highest levels of excellence and friendship. Tokyo 2016 had a vision of Games with a total athlete focus, in order to provide the greatest possible sporting experience; of green urbanism, which was to regenerate the urban environment; and of meeting the people, so as to provide a stage for celebrating diversity and intercultural communication.
Every competition venue for Tokyo 2016 was within an 8-km radius of the new city-centre Olympic Stadium with the exception of the shooting venue, and the football preliminary venues in the co-host cities (all of which are fully operational). Tokyo 2016 promised to be the most compact, efficient Games ever, with 70 per cent of the athletes in the Olympic Village just 10 minutes away from their venues. The city-centre venues were close by, so that travel would be kept to a minimum whether it was on foot, or by wheelchair, bicycle, fleets powered exclusively by carbon-free fuels or Tokyo’s public transport system.
Chicago 2016 envisioned the Games as a truly joyous festival of sport and humanity, celebrating the Olympic spirit as embodied by the athletes. This vision was to guide all of the future Organising Committee’s decisions, activities and programmes and be integrated throughout the seven-year cycle into all aspects of the Games. As a city of festivals, Chicago felt that it was distinctly capable of fulfilling this vision. The city is graced with lakefront promenades, expansive parks, grand boulevards, renowned cultural institutions and world-class amenities - all of which were to be integral to Chicago’s celebration of the Games. The city welcomes tens of millions of people annually to these spaces for festivals, parades, concerts and other public gatherings. Throughout the year, the centre of the city comes alive with celebrations of sport, art, music and cultural heritage.
The Olympic Village lay at the heart of Chicago 2016’s plan. It was linked closely to the lakefront, the parks and the vast majority of venues. This vision for the Games was driven by an intense focus on sport to ensure the best possible experience for the athletes. Twenty-two of the 26 sports were to be concentrated in the centre of the city. Ninety per cent of all athletes would have resided within 15 minutes of their competition and training venues. Just steps away from the Village, the largest multi-use facility in North America would have housed the Lake Michigan Sports Complex, home to 11 Olympic and 8 Paralympic sports, and the International Broadcast Centre and Main Press Centre .