Kansas City seeks bid to host the 2026 World Cup
As Kansas City wraps up celebrating the Chiefs' Super Bowl win, it looks to bring more champions to the city. The Kansas City Sports Commission put in a bid to be a host city for the 2026 World Cup.
Officials and hundreds of fans think there's a pretty good shot of seeing some matches played in KC. Partly because of how well the city showed out at the Power & Light District for World Cup watch parties. They hope scenes like that will show FIFA and U.S. Soccer that Kansas City deserves to be a host city.
Kansas City is still left in the running for ten spots. The matches will be played across the U.S., Mexico and Canada in 2026. This is the first time a three-nation bid won.
The selection process amps up in February with meetings with the committee, and host site visits starting in March.
CEO and President of the Kansas City Sports Commission, Kathy Nelson, said the top priority is figuring out transportation to Arrowhead Stadium, where the games would be played.
"So when we have all of these visitors in our city, most of them will be outside of our country let alone out of our city. How do you get them to the hotel from the airport, and again from the airport and hotels out to the venue? So we're working through all of that transportation," she said.
Nelson said the timing of the selection process lines up nicely with the Chiefs winning Super Bowl LIV. She said the success of the parade could help the bid.
“When we have only 5 incidents with police department, we know how well our police handle crowds. That is something we will definitely include in our next bid,” Nelson said. “When you see those pictures of people and the pride they show to celebrate sports we include those pictures in our next bid. All of this continues to help us go after bigger and bigger projects.”
The bigger projects require more collaboration. The executive committee for the bid includes officials from Wyandotte and Jackson counties, the city of Kansas City and soccer organizations.
Nelson said the sports commission coordinates the process, but relies heavily on its partners.
“It’s not just us it can’t be just us. It’s the fire department, police department, RideKC. It’s the parking garages, it’s parks and rec, it’s solid waste,” Nelson said. “We all have relationships with everyone and are coming together to make sure we do what’s best for our city and best for our fans, that’s why it works.”