Lima elected over Asuncion as replacement to host 2027 Pan Am Games

The Peruvian capital tallied 28 of the 52 eligible votes among 40 nations

Closing Ceremony of Santiago 2023 Pan Am Games, November 5, 2023 (Photo: Marcos Dominguez / Panam Sports )
Closing Ceremony of Santiago 2023 Pan Am Games, November 5, 2023 (Photo: Marcos Dominguez / Panam Sports )

Lima, Peru has been elected to host the 2027 Pan American Games during a hastily arranged virtual Extraordinary General Assembly livestreamed from Miami.

The Peruvian capital tallied 28 of the 52 eligible votes among 40 nations.

Asuncion and Lima were named replacement candidates only six weeks ago when both cities submitted applications before the January 31 deadline. In January Barranquilla in Colombia was stripped of the Games by the Pan Am Sports Organization (PASO) after the organizing committee missed financial milestones including a USD $4 million fee due last December 31.

High ranking officials from Peru and Paraguay were in Miami to deliver 40 minute presentations and answer questions of PASO members ahead of an Evaluation Commission report and the secret ballot final vote.

PASO said the security of the online vote, held over Zoom, was ensured by British online voting company Lumi.

The Pan Am Games are a major continental multi-sport competition held every four years, recently with more than 6,000 athletes.

Lima last hosted the Pan Am Games in 2019 and is considered a solid choice due to existing, tested infrastructure and expertise that will be valuable during the tight timelines. Organizers plan to further develop the Athlete’s Village legacy from the 2019 edition by adding five new housing towers.

The bid committee said the timing of the Games is flexible with September the preferred date, but it will adapt to the busy international sport calendar.

Peru’s Prime Minister Gustavo Adrianzen and Lima Mayor Rafael Lopez Aliaga spoke with support for the project and the estimated USD $370 million budget.

“We are happy for this victory. We will work to make everyone’s experience the best they have ever had, and they have the absolute devotion of more than 33 million Peruvians. Thank you for trusting us,” President of the Peruvian Olympic Committee, Renzo Manyari said following the vote.

Asuncion was rumored to have interest in hosting the event early on as relations between Panam Sports and Barranquilla began to weaken last year and that led to Colombian officials claiming Paraguay was undermining their plans, and trying to steal the Games away. Paraguayan President Santiago Peña joined the livestream to support the bid in the nation that has never hosted.

Asuncion has already been chosen to stage the 2025 Junior Pan Am Games.

Paraguay was challenged with a more complicated project requiring the construction of several venues over a compressed timeline. The close vote made clear that PASO members wanted a new location as host, but in the end they took the more cautious approach.

Sao Paulo in Brazil was also a possible contender after officials there said they had been targeting to host the 2031 edition.

The last Pan Am Games were hosted in 2023 by Santiago, Chile.

A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.

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