SLC bathed in gold in honor of International Olympic Committee visitors

Apr 10, 2024, 5:02 PM | Updated: Apr 11, 2024, 12:10 pm

Salt Lake City will glow gold every night of this week in hopes of welcoming the Olympics once agai...

Salt Lake City will glow gold every night of this week in hopes of welcoming the Olympics once again in 2034. (Stevee Brinkerhoff)

(Stevee Brinkerhoff)

SALT LAKE CITY — Tuesday night the buildings of downtown Salt Lake City were transformed with a golden glow. And, they’ll be lit up every night this week in hopes of welcoming the Olympics in 2034.

“Of course, with the Olympics, the gold medal [is] the top spot,” said Salt Lake Chamber President and CEO Derek Miller. “We continue to be optimistic that Utah will be the top spot for the 2034 Winter Games.”

 According to Miller,  it’s all part of the effort to convince members of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that the Beehive State is ready to host another Olympic Games.

“Think about the major, iconic buildings downtown. Some new, some old,” he said. “There’s just a lot of businesses that are excited about bringing the Olympics back to Salt Lake City.”

This isn’t the first time downtown buildings have changed color, according to Miller.

“In 2002, they sort of changed color,” he said. “But this time gold is the only acceptable metal we want so gold is the color you will see.”

Miller said the idea of transforming downtown buildings didn’t just come from one person.

“It’s really a coming together of community,” he said. “That’s really the spirit of the Olympics.”

He said this is what helped Utah be successful in 2002, and it is what will help it be successful in 2034.

Will a golden Salt Lake City impress the International Olympic Committee?

According to Miller, the 2002 games were the first to bring more money to the community than what was spent on them. Part of that money went to an endowment that’s still providing money today.

“The idea of the endowment fund was to keep our Olympic venues going … to serve the communities where they were located,” he said.

The endowment makes it possible for Utah’s Olympic venues, like the Utah Olympic Oval, to house its Olympic teams “with the hope that one day the Olympics would come back.”

Miller said the Chamber hopes lighting the buildings will help show the IOC it’s not just people, but also businesses wanting to host another Olympic Games.

“This is the gateway to our state and we all ought to take pride in our capital city,” he said.

The Chamber hopes the IOC will feel Utah’s pride for Salt Lake City.

“It’s a beautiful city. It’s a growing city. The setting itself is unmatched,” Miller said.

Salt Lake City’s “snow-caped” mountains and its glowing gold buildings serve as a “visual representation for how the people of [Utah] feel about welcoming the Olympics back.”

Downtown Salt Lake City will light up through Saturday night while IOC members are in town for a final evaluation of the city.

See photos the golden glow below:

(Photos by Stevee Brinkerhoff)

Devin Oldroyd contributed to this story.

Related: Committee identifies 13 Utah locations to serve as possible 2034 Winter Olympics venues

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SLC bathed in gold in honor of International Olympic Committee visitors