After putting on the appearance of tough campaigning by the City of Edmonton and Province of Alberta officials, the University of Alberta was denied its opportunity to host the Universiade Games in 2015.
‘Appearances,‘ included sending a delegation of officials to Europe, including spending +$6,000 to send Tourism Minister Cindy Ady and her Executive Assistant to Belgium before sources close to Edmonton’s bid committee admitted this weekend that they knew their chances were slim (perhaps University President Indira Samerasekra used up her political capital at the Bilderberg Conference earlier this month).
According to University of Alberta Students’ Union President Kory Mathewson, a successful bid could have seen the University invest in kind of infrastructure and capital improvements that it saw when it played host to the 1983 Universiade:
“The (Games) offered the potential to address critical issues facing our university, such as a severe lack of student residences and a general space shortage on campus, so this is a setback for students.”
While the City can’t expect to win every event it bids to host, competing for these types of international events can do a lot to help raise the profile of Edmonton (and help debunk our newfound Albertan image as Northumberland-on-the-Energy-Beach).