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Mega-sporting events in urban and regional policy: a history of the Winter Olympics

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'Mega-events', such as the Olympic Games, have emerged as an important tool of urban and regional renewal through their ability to justify redevelopment and enhancement, attract inward investment, promote tourism and create new images for host cities. This paper complements previous research into the urban effects of the Summer Games by focusing on the infrastructural legacy of hosting the Winter Games, 1924-2002. The discussion concentrates upon the growing intensity of the intra-urban competition to host the event and identifies four phases in the changing infrastructural implications of staging the Games. As a component of urban and regional policy, the Winter Olympics present both major risks and clear opportunities for the effective transformation of host centres.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: School of Geography University of Plymouth Drake Circus Plymouth PL4 8AA Devon UK, Email:

Publication date: 2004-04-01

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