ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) — St. Louis will find out tomorrow if the stars of the Olympics will make a stop here on their way to Rio in 2016, but before the city threw their hat in the ring organizers needed to make sure the city was ready.
St. Louis Sports Commission president Frank Viverito explained to Swimming World Magazine, the unique plan to turn the Edward Jones Dome into a temporary natatorium. Earlier this month that idea prompted concern that the floor in the dome may not be strong enough to hold two Olympic sized swimming pools. Engineers have confirmed to KMOX that is no longer a concern.
“It wasn’t necessarily in question, it was getting more confirmation,” said St. Louis Sports Commission Spokesman Marc Schreiber. “We know that the facility is more than capable to support the weight of the pool.”
Another concern putting St. Louis at a disadvantage from the other cities: Omaha, Neb. and San Antonio, Texas was that St. Louis might actually be too busy. The event’s July 4th opening means it will run the same time as Fair St. Louis.
“We’d love to see the fair as a platform to promote the event. We could do opening ceremonies with the swimming trials combined with the fair,” speculated Schreiber.
The 2012 Olympic Swimming Trials, held in Omaha, saw more than 164,000 fans over eight days of competition.
The 2004 Olympic Trials in Long Beach, Calif., marked the first time the Olympic Trials were held in an outdoor venue with temporary pools built by Myrtha Pools. In 2008 and 2012, the Trials moved to Omaha, Neb., where two temporary pools were built inside the CenturyLink Center Omaha.
U.S.A. Swimming will announce the winning city at 5 p.m. Saturday or online here.