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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Petersburg Eyes Olympics

ST. PETERSBURG -- St. Petersburg, venue of the 1994 Goodwill Games, is planning a bid to host the 2004 Summer Olympics.


"St. Petersburg is ready to stage not only the Summer Olympics, but the winter, fall, spring and any other ones as well," Russian Olympic Committee spokesperson Svetlana Smirnova said Monday. She expects a formal application to be submitted within two months.


St. Petersburg joins 13 other cities that have said they want to host the 28th Summer Olympics, including Cape Town, Istanbul, San Juan and Seville. Moscow hosted the Summer Games in 1980, although many countries boycotted the event in protest at the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.


St. Petersburg spent $2 million to remodel its Soviet-era sports facilities for the third Goodwill Games last year, the biggest sporting event to be held in Russia since the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991.


Problems, including water in the pool that was too dirty to see through, soft, dirty ice that delayed the figure skating, poor attendance, and general disorganization, provoked charges that St. Petersburg was ill-prepared to stage such an event.


About 65,000 athletes, organizers and tourists turned out for the games, packing the city's hotels and leaving people scrambling for flights.


The IOC will select the winner in September 1997.