Where is the International Olympic Committee Headquartered?

Lausanne, Switzerland is the home of the International Olympic Committee.  Editorial credit: Roman Vukolov / Shutterstock.com
Lausanne, Switzerland is the home of the International Olympic Committee. Editorial credit: Roman Vukolov / Shutterstock.com

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is the topmost decision making organ of the worldwide Olympic movement. It is an independent organization comprising of volunteers who are committed to making the world a better place through sports. It promotes sports by redistributing about 90% of the income to wider sporting movements at every level around the world. The mission of the IOC as highlighted in the Olympic Charter is to offer support to the development of sports through ethical and environmentally sustainable means. IOC was formed on June 23, 1894, and was charged with the responsibility of organizing the Olympic Games. The first Olympic Game organized by the IOC was the 1896 Summer Olympics in Athens. Today, IOC has expanded to include 105 members.

IOC Head Offices

The IOC operates through the National Olympic Committees based at the national levels. NOCs support the development of sports in their respective offices. As of 2017, there are 2015 NOCs over five continents. Thus, through NOCs, IOC has offices in member countries. But where is IOC headquartered? IOC is headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland. Vidy, an area in the city of Lausanne, has hosted the IOC head office since 1968. However, beginning February 5, 2016, most of the staff was moved from the Chateau de Vidy building to temporary offices in Pully, near the upcoming Olympic House which is expected to be completed by 2020. The move from Vidy was occasioned by a flooding in Lausanne that affected the operations of the IOC for days.

IOC Headquarters in Lausanne

Although Lausanne has been the IOC headquarters since 1964, it was confirmed as the Olympic Capital for the next 100 year during the centenary celebration of the establishment of the IOC in 1994. Lausanne is the biggest and the capital city of the canton of Vaud. It is located on the shores of Lake Geneva, facing the French town of Evian-Les-Bains. Apart from being the Olympic Capital, Lausanne also hosts the Court of Arbitration for Sports and several international sports association. The city has a population of approximately 420,000 people as of 2015, with the metropolitan area having a population of about 1.2 million people. Lausanne has a well-developed transportation system, being the smallest city in the world with a rapid transit system.

The Olympic House

Back in 2014, the IOC began the ambitious project of building a new office to consolidate its offices and over 600 staff scattered throughout Lausanne. The complex which is expected to be completed in 2020 will be known as the Olympic House. The new headquarters is designed around three main elements: movement, flexibility, and sustainability. The complex was designed by 3XN and is located on a 24,000 square meters site on the shores of Lake Geneva. The building appears different from all angles and brings out the idea of the energy of an athlete in motion. The design is also intended to encourage interactions and knowledge sharing among the staff. The complex is meant to incorporate some of the modern sustainable principles such as efficient energy use. The project is expected to cost approximately $159 million.


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