Six bids were initially submitted for the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics. Buenos Aires confirmed their bid in September 2011. On 13 February 2013, the IOC selected Buenos Aires as one of the three Candidate Cities for the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games. The other two candidate cities were Glasgow and Medellín. Guadalajara and Rotterdam failed to become candidates. Poznań withdrew their bid before the candidate cities were selected.
The host city election vote was held at an IOC Session in Lausanne. The results were as follows:
In October 2013, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach appointed Namibian sprinter and four-time Olympic silver medalist Frank Fredericks as Chairman of the Coordination Commission for the 3rd Summer Youth Olympic Games - Buenos Aires 2018. Fredericks is heading the six-person IOC Coordination Commission made up of several Olympians including Danka Bartekova, the youngest IOC Member and Young Ambassador from the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010. This commission is completed by two other IOC members, China's Li Lingwei, winner of three World Badminton Championships, and Barry Maister, a member of New Zealand's hockey team that won the Olympic gold medals at 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal; and Adham Sharara, Canadian President of the International Table Tennis Federation, and Henry Nuñez, head of the National Olympic Committee of Costa Rica. Working along with them there is the Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee (BAYOGOC), that includes member of the Argentine Olympic Committee (AOC), the local government and the national government, and which CEO is Leandro Larrosa. The local organising committee involves young people in all levels of the organization; including an ‘Athlete Commission’ and a newly established ‘Youth Commission’ – a group of young consultants chosen by the AOC from local schools and universities – and the employees within BAYOGOC from junior to director level. The first Coordination Commission meeting took place in Buenos Aires on 27–28 September 2014.
During June 2015 a small delegation from Nanjing Youth Olympic Games Organizing Committee (NYOGOC) visited Buenos Aires for a series of debriefing workshops and seminars to pass on their expertise focusing on strategic decisions to be made in the early stages such as legacy, the use of the YOG to impact youth and sport, and benefits of the YOG to engage communities. The CEOs of Singapore 2010, Lillehammer 2016 and Innsbruck 2012 also took part of these meetings that were presided over by Frank Fredericks.
Football player and Olympic gold medalist Lionel Messi, originally not from Buenos Aires but from Rosario, was named as an ambassador of the 2018 YOG in March 2014, and he delivered a video welcoming message for the young athletes to Buenos Aires during the closing ceremony of the 2014 Summer Youth Olympics. In December 2015, the four-time olympic medalist Luciana Aymar was also named as an ambassador of Buenos Aires 2018.
Joining the Olympic programme for the first time at Buenos Aires 2018 will be, among others, BMX freestyle, Kitesurfing, Cross country running, beach handball, sport climbing, karate and breakdancing; and the event programme will see an increased gender balance. FIFA has also decided that futsal will replace football at the Buenos Aires Youth Olympics, while other sports such as skateboarding and roller sports are being considered for the programme.
Three years before the event, a survey showed that public support had reached 82.3 percent in favour of the Yourh Olympic games in Buenos Aires. During the second visit of the International Olympic Committee’s Coordination Commission to the city, on August 13 and 14, 2015, Mr. Fredericks highlighted the implementation of 13 of the recommendation of the Agenda 2020 by BAYOGOC.
Before the YOG Buenos Aires will host the 2017 Youth World Archery Championships at Parque Polideportivo Roca, being the first World Archery event ever awarded to Argentina and to any South American country.
The official emblem of the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics was presented in July 2015, three years before the games. The emblem reflects the diversity of Buenos Aires and it is inspired by the city’s vibrant colours, eclectic culture, iconic architecture and the many neighbourhoods that make up the Argentine capital. Each letter represents a famous landmark, including the Floralis Genérica, Space Tower, the Columbus Theatre, the National Library and the Obelisk. A short video produced by the Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee (BAYOGOC) shows what each letter on the emblem relates to.
The original plan was based on the bid for the 2004 Summer Olympics, in which a 15 km long Olympic Corridor would have worked instead of a more concentrated Olympic Park. For the Buenos Aires bid for the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics the Olympic Corridor was adapted into a Green Corridor, one of the two main sports zones as the primary sites of the Games in Buenos Aires 2018, being the other one Parque Roca, to the south of the city. The Green Corridor and the Olympic Corridor shared River Plate Stadium, Tiro Federal, Gimnasia y Esgrima de Buenos Aires, Parque Tres de Febrero, La Bombonera, La Rural and CeNARD as venues.
In order to group the sports in a more compact framework, in September 2014 a new four-clusters concept was revealed, dropping out venues such as La Rural. It was announced then that each cluster will include an area called YOG FEST where sporting experiences, family entertainment and cultural activities will take place. But at the 129th IOC Session, in August 2016, a new venues masterplan was presented, including two new stand-alone venues, adding La Rural once again and replacing Parque Sarmiento with Tecnópolis.
The International Olympic Committee members will be staying at the Sheraton Hotel, located in the district of Retiro and close to Retiro railway station, one of the most important transportation hub in Buenos Aires.
Adjacent to downtown Buenos Aires and stretching three kilometres along the scenic banks of the River Plate,this area is distinguished by swathes of parks. It includes the barrios of Núñez and Palermo. The Palermo Woods, a highly popular retreat for porteños and visitors alike, will be the triathlon and cycling venue.
Venues located in Núñez can be reached by Belgrano Norte Line (at Ciudad Universitaria railway station) or by nearby Mitre Line (at Núñez Station) or Buenos Aires underground Line D (at Congreso de Tucumán Station). Venues located in Palermo can be reached by Mitre Line (Tres de Febrero and Lisandro de la Torre station).
Located to the South of Buenos Aires, Roca Park is a vast area of 200 hectares in the district of Villa Soldati, a neighborhood that has been targeted by the local Government in need of urban development. One of the greenest areas in the metropolis, it is adjacent to the City Park and the Buenos Aires Automotive Racetrack. The Park, inaugurated in the 1980s, has many sports venues and recreational facilities, including the iconic Roca Park Athletics Stadium and the Roca Park Tennis Stadium. This area will also be the site of the Main Media Center (MMC) and the Youth Olympic Village (YOV), from where 65 percent of the athletes will be able to walk to their competition venues, and after the event it will become the new location for the CeNARD.
Olympic Park can be reached by Premetro tram at Cecilia Grierson station, or by the southern Metrobus line.
Located to the east of the city, this cluster occupies a significant portion of the Río de la Plata riverbank and includes the old Puerto Madero docks as venue for water sports. Rowing competitions will be held over 500 metres rather than the usual 2,000 metres.
This area can be reached by Buenos Aires Underground lines A, B, D and E.
Located west of the city and next to the General Paz Avenue, that marks the limit of Buenos Aires city, the 50 hectares science, technology, industry and art mega exhibition Tecnópolis was inaugurated in 2011 and will be the venue for four sports competitions. This area can be access by Mitre Line Railway at Migueletes station or by Belgrano Norte Line ar Padilla station.