Coronavirus crisis and postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics have led to renewed debate in Paris, the city set to host the following edition of the Summer Games.

Several elected officials have this week said the French capital should “rethink” preparations, while one councillor has renewed calls for a referendum on whether or not Paris should host the Games in 2024.

City Councillor Danielle Simonnet has previously campaigned for a referendum and renewed those calls this week.

On Twitter, Simonnet said the matter was more “topical” than ever given recent events.

France is officially in recession and it is predicted that the economic consequences of the pandemic will be long-lasting.

Jacques Boutault, the green Mayor of Paris’ second arrondissement, also said new questions had surfaced because of the crisis and the postponement of Tokyo 2020 until 2021.

In comments reported by Le Parisien, he asked: “Is it relevant to keep the Olympic Games in Paris in the same form as before?

“Shouldn’t we take the opportunity to rethink them and ask Parisians for their opinions?

“Wouldn’t it be wiser to give yourself one more year, as Tokyo did, and to talk about Paris 2025?”

Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet previously accepted when speaking to insidethegames that savings would have to be made, but insisted the “DNA” of the city’s bid to host the Game would remain intact.

“More than ever we need this project and we need to keep the best of this project, and the DNA of this project won’t change,” Estanguet said.

Transport, accommodation and human resources were areas cited by Estanguet as where Paris 2024 can make significant savings.

read also:Olympics official sees ‘real problems’ in holding Games in 2021

There have been in excess of 28,000 COVID-19 deaths in France, with Paris hit particularly hard.

Professional sport will not return to France until at least September.


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