PARIS (KMSP) - The Minnesota bid to host the 2023 World’s Fair finished third in voting Wednesday by the Bureau International des Expositions member state delegates. The delegates elected Buenos Aires, Argentina over Lodz, Poland in the second round of voting. The United States bid with a Minnesota host site was eliminated in the first round of voting.
Now called "World Expos," the events might not be the iconic extravaganzas of old, but they still have the potential to draw millions to their host cities. "Healthy People, Healthy Planet" was Minnesota's proposed theme for 2023.
The Minnesota host site included land which is now a working farm near the Mall of America, and sits a short distance away from the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The American bid committee promoted the region’s reputation for healthy lifestyles, but the proximity of academic and medical institutions that are also leaders in the subject.
The United States has no hosted a world expo since the 1984 World Expo in New Orleans, with an expected 12 million people passing through the region over a 10-month period.
In the closings remarks at the meeting in Paris, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan told the delegates the Minnesota bid for Expo 2022/23 enjoys “deep support at all levels of government.”
To win the World’s Fair bid, a site must earn two-thirds of votes cast. If no site wins outright, the two candidates with the most votes move to a second round, where a simple majority is needed to be elected. In the first round of voting, Poland and Argentina each earned 46 votes, and the United States 25 votes. Argentina won the second round of voting with 62 votes to Poland's 56.
Minnesota Bid Committee statements
Mark Ritchie, Minnesota World’s Fair Bid Committee CEO and President:
“While we are of course disappointed, it needs to be said that it’s been a great experience for our team to become fully engaged with the BIE and member states from around the world."
Marilyn Carlson Nelson, Minnesota World’s Fair Bid Committee Board of Directors:
“I’m confident we’ve done nothing but good for our region, and for the advancement of the theme Healthy People, Healthy Planet. I’m very proud to have participated, and thank all of the volunteers and members of the team who worked so hard."