Officials visit Paris to plan for 2028 Olympics  

By Alize Dakdduk 

Contributing Writer

LOS ANGELES — Mayor Karen Bass returned March 10 after leading a delegation to Paris to learn best practices and develop business partnerships in preparation for the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Los Angeles. 

Paris will be the host of the 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic games. 

During the three-day trip, Bass and her team focused on how Paris’ Olympic strategy is incorporating innovative housing ideas and green transportation and infrastructure projects.

“As we continue our delegation to prepare for the Olympics, it is critical that we are keeping in mind how best to serve our most vulnerable populations in Los Angeles,” said Bass, who has made solving her city’s homelessness crisis her top priority.

Bass also stressed that business growth will be a key component of Los Angeles’ Olympic strategy. To that end, she and her delegation visited Business France, the French national agency charged with promoting international economic development. There, she met with more than 20 business leaders to explore opportunities for business growth in the lead-up to the 2024 and 2028 games.

“The city of Los Angeles must be prepared to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games. This trip is vital to that preparation while generating business development and learning from innovative housing, green transportation and infrastructure projects,” Bass said in a statement.

Bass also had meetings with the American Ambassador to France and Monaco, Denise Campbell Bauer, as well as French business and political leaders, including Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, the first woman to hold the office.

Hidalgo held a one-on-one meeting with Bass. On the second day of the trip, Hidalgo also hosted an International Women’s Day panel discussion with Bass, Amsterdam Mayor Femke Halsema, Mauritanian political leader Fatimatou Abdel Malick and Mongolian Foreign Minister Battestseg Batmunkh.

On her first day in Paris, Bass received a briefing from U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission David R. McCawley and the Attaché of the 2024 Olympics and Paralympic Games on political, economic, safety and consular affairs.

Bass also toured a women’s shelter where 30 women are housed.

At a reception held at the U.S Ambassador’s residence, the Los Angeles officials were joined by representatives from Warner Brothers Discovery, the owner of European broadcast rights for the 2024 Olympics, along with athletes, French business and government leaders, and other guests from across Europe.

On March 9, Bass signed an agreement with the city of Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine, a Paris suburb and location of the Olympic and Paralympic Athlete Village for the Paris Games. 

According to Bass’ office, the partnership will focus on “shared priorities for youth, the environment, sports and culture and to share knowledge from the 2024 Games in Paris in order to adequately prepare.”

During her visit to Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine, Bass toured the Olympic Village, which is located next to a highway. To combat pollution, developers have installed massive outdoor air purifiers around the complex. The delegation also visited Adidas Stadium, an arena slated to host some Olympic events, and a Westfield shopping mall complex.

“As we get ready to return to Los Angeles we know that we’ve made real connections that will bring ideas and investment to the city of Los Angeles,” Bass said in a statement. “I want to thank Mayor Mathieu Hanotin of Saint-Denis for sharing with us the transformative projects underway in his community, and to Mayor Karim Bouamrane of Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine for our new partnership and the great introduction to his city. I appreciate the warm welcome and the opportunity to learn about their plans underway for the 2024 Games and its legacy.”

Bass and her delegation returned to L.A. on March 10. Members of the delegation included City Council President Paul Krekorian, City Councilwomen Traci Park and Katy Yaroslavsky, and Stephanie Wiggins, CEO of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority; LA84 Foundation President and CEO Renata Simril and Priscilla Cheng, senior vice president for government relations at LA28, the committee preparing for the 2028 Summer Olympics.

Alize Dakdduk is a reporter for California Black Media.