The speculation of Boston hosting the 2024 Summer Olympics gained more momentum yesterday when the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) unanimously picked Boston as their choice for a US city; beating out Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Los Angeles. The announcement was tweeted last night at 6:30.
The committee will now work with Boston on their bid to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) who will decide in 2017. The other cities competing are Rome, Paris, Berlin, Hamburg and Istanbul. Melbourne, Australia has also said they will be interested (with Equestrian events being held in Stockholm, Sweden for customs reasons.)
Boston’s bid has been a big debate among those of us that live here. The main objections are cost, traffic, opportunity cost and what will be done with the stadiums once the games are over. The Boston2024 committee says it can bring in $4.5 billion dollars of private funding with $5 billion dollars of public infrastructure improvements. Opponents believe that we should use that money for other things. Others have concerns about transparency, or the lack thereof. No one has seen any of the plans any plans or budgets. Besides cost, residents are concerned about the day-to-day problems such as traffic, crowds and public safety.
The United States have not hosted the Olympics since 1996 so it could be cool in that sense, but this is the perfect example of “Not in my backyard!” We’ve discussed the potential problems of a Boston bid on the blog here and here. My view hasn’t really changed; Storrow Drive can’t even handle a Sox/Yankees weekend let alone an international event; not to mention all the construction traffic leading up to the games.
What do you think of this decision? Where would you like to see the Olympics in 2024?