Munich’s hopes of hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in 2018 have been lifted with the opening of a new 1.5 kilometre cable car service, capable of carrying up to 2,000 passengers per hour to the pistes of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, a key location for the Munich 2018 alpine events.
The eight million Euro ‘Kandahar Express’ represents a significant enhancement of the region’s winter sports infrastructure and was partly funded by federal and state government, underscoring their support for the sports tourism industry and for hosting major events such as the Winter Games in 2018. The news also gives a timely boost to Garmisch-Partenkirchen where the prestigious FIS World Ski Championships will be held in 2011. The service was opened in style when German ski stars Christian Neureuther, Rosi Mittermaier and Martina Ertl-Renz became the first passengers. Willy Bogner, Manager and CEO for the Munich 2018 Bid, "The Kandahar Express is an important investment for the future. It further establishes Garmisch-Partenkirchen as a superb winter sports region, offering benefits for the 2011 FIS World Ski Championships, Munich’s bid for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in 2018 and tourism in the region. It also complements our aim to make the Games as spectator-friendly as possible".
The 'Kandahar Express' gives easy access to the three kilometre long Kandahar slope, which will stage most of the races during the World Championships. The re-built and modernised track was re-opened a year ago.
"Munich’s application to host the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games reflects the region’s enduring affinity with winter sports and its focus on protecting the environment in which winter sports are held", said a bid spokesperson. "The Games concept is based on sustainability and the short distances between innovative sports venues and its environmentally friendly Olympic Villages in Munich and Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Ice sport will be staged in Munich while Alpine events will be in Garmisch-Partenkirchen".
The Bid Committee has also developed a comprehensive environmental concept which is designed to set new standards for the Games.