After the announcement that Lisbon will host Eurovision 2018, three cities have called on RTP to hold a bidding process for the contest.
Observador has reported that following the announcement by RTP that Lisbon will host Eurovision 2018, three cities are now calling for a bidding process to decide the host city. The Mayors of Guimarães, Faro and Santa Maria da Feira have all called on RTP to hold a competition to decide the city that will host Eurovision 2018, following the process seen in recent years where host broadcasters have called on cities to bid.
One city that has ruled itself out from hosting the competition in 2018 if such a contest was run is Porto. The renovation of the Pavilhão Rosa Mota was approved today which will see the site closed for a period of two years. Porto would not have any another suitable venues unless renovation is sped up.
In the event that a bidding process is opened Guimarães would be unlikely to meet the criteria to host the contest. The city lacks access to an international airport, which is one of the major requirements for hosting the contest, while Santa Maria da Feira is 45km south of Porto Airport. As a result the only two cities in mainland Portugal that would be capable of meeting that criteria would be Faro and Lisbon. Faro’s main bid limitation would be the lack of a venue suitable for hosting the Eurovision Song Contest. Despite the challenges Faro wishes to take part in the bidding process.
The European Broadcasting Union according to the Director General of RTP has already suggested that the Meo Arena in Lisbon be used as the venue for the competition. The Meo Arena was completed in 1998 as the pavilion for EXPO’98 and has a capacity of 20,000. It is the joint third largest indoor arena in Europe and the largest in Portugal. Previously the venue has played host to finals of a number of World & European sporting championships