The World Summer Games are different from the annual competition held in the Southland every year.
At a press conference announcing the decision Wednesday, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa welcomed the event, saying the city is proud to host the games' talented athletes.
Olympic officials said there are 4 million special Olympians around the world.
During the 2015 games, 7,000 athletes from 170 countries will take part. The games are held every two years.
The last time they were held in the U.S. was 1999 in Raleigh, N.C.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.