Declaring themselves "underwhelmed" by bids from London, Paris and New York
to host the 2012 Summer Olympic Games, the International Olympic Committee has asked DOE's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory to submit a bid to host the games.
"Fermilab has much to offer," said IOC President Jacques Rogge, of Belgium. "The Tevatron and Main Injector rings would be an unparalleled venue for track events, and the lab already has an Olympic-sized pool and a Village. As for field events, Fermilab is almost nothing BUT field. Frankly, none of the bids we have received so far can compare."
Officials from DOE and Fermilab said they were pleased by the invitation, although no final decision on a bid had been reached.
"It is true that developing a bid for the 2012 Games would entail some effort," said Fermilab Director Michael Witherell, "but I doubt that it would be more complicated than preparing for the average Lehman review. Fermilab's expertise is in planning and building big projects for international users, so a bid for the 2012 games would be a logical step."
Witherell cautioned Fermilab employees about offering special inducements, such as Fermilab rulers or baseball caps, to IOC committee members.
"They'll decide on the merits," Witherell said. "If we decide to go forward, I think Fermilab will stand an excellent chance."