LA projects US$161 mil. surplus if it gets 2024 Olympics
After anxiety over taxpayer costs helped cripple Boston’s 2024 Olympic bid, organizers in potential stand-in Los Angeles disclosed a budget Tuesday that shows the city holding a US$161 million surplus after staging events from Santa Monica beaches to the Hollywood Hills.
Los Angeles, which hosted the 1932 and 1984 Olympics, is viewed as the likely replacement for Boston’s failed bid because the city’s many existing venues could help keep costs low.
The Los Angeles plan projects spending US$4.1 billion; Boston’s operating budget was about US$4.6 billion, but billions more could have been needed for construction, security and other costs.
The Los Angeles figures provided the most detailed look to date on estimated expenses to run the 2024 Games in California. According to the documents, the bulk of the funding would come from broadcast revenue, sponsorships and ticket sales.
“In Los Angeles, the spotlight is always on. We have the resources, experience and secure environment to share the biggest events with the world,” the proposal states.
The Los Angeles City Council is expected to vote Friday on a proposal giving Mayor Eric Garcetti authority to execute agreements linked to the city’s bid.
Under the plan, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum would get an US$800 million makeover focused on seating upgrades and premium amenities. The University of Southern California, which plays its football games at the Coliseum, would invest US$500 million for the renovation, the plan states.
Nearly US$1 billion more would be needed for other competition venues, according to the plan.
The release of the cost estimate came about a month after the U.S. Olympic Committee cut talks with Boston, which was initially selected as the U.S. contender for the games. A sticking point in Boston was possible cost overruns that would have to be covered by taxpayers.
The USOC faces a Sept. 15 deadline to enter a bid with the International Olympic Committee.
The Los Angeles proposal envisions events taking place at locations showcasing the best of the area.
Gymnastics and basketball would be held at the downtown Staples Center, home to the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers. Volleyball would be staged on Santa Monica Beach.