City promises economic upturn leading up to the games
After weeks of negotiations, the City of Los Angeles has finally locked in a deal with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to host the 2028 Summer Olympics, a move that officials are confident will be financially advantageous.
The deal brings the Summer Games back to LA for the third time after the city hosted in 1984 and 1932.
“This is a big win for Los Angeles,” Casey Wasserman, chairman of the LA Olympic bid committee, told reporters at a news conference on Monday, July 31 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California, which is slated to be one of the venues for the 2028 Games.
For the last few weeks, the city has been in talks with both the IOC and officials from Paris, a rival bid city about which city shall host the 2024 and 2028 games. Last month, the IOC complicated the competition for the 2024 Games when it named two winners in LA and Paris.
The latter city is slated to host the 2024 Games.
“There is no other metaphor. It was a marathon,” LA Mayor Eric Garcetti said at the press conference. “A couple times, we were counted out altogether. But we never hit a wall. We never lost our focus, and today we are at the finish line.”
“We are here today to make history,” Garcetti said. “I’m proud to say the Olympics are coming back to the United States of America.”
According to Wasserman, the predicted contribution from the IOC to Paris in 2024 will be $1.7 billion. Significantly, the IOC contribution to LA in 2028 would be at least $2 billion because of the sponsorship money the city is predicted to receive.
Additionally, LA would also generate more savings and supplementary revenue in domestic sponsorship deals that would be unclaimed by international corporate partners of the IOC.
Usually, the bulk of contributions from the IOC isn’t sent to the host cities until a couple years before the games, but the IOC has agreed to give LA an advance of $180 million that will cover the organizing committee’s costs for the additional four years.
Notably, as much as $160 million of the advanced contribution will be funneled into public youth sports programs, which Garcetti promised could see increased funding as soon as within the next year.
Moreover, LA’s bid estimate includes a $487.6 million contingency, money set aside for cost overruns to avoid huge financial blows that have plagued host cities in the past. If the 2028 games finish at or are under budget, that contingency would be converted into a surplus; and, city officials have made a deal to keep most of that money.
“I can look people in the eye and say this is a much stronger deal financially,” Garcetti said. “I want something for the people of LA now. I want the excitement to build.”
Garcetti, who led the city’s campaign to bring the Olympics back, is positive that the terms of the agreement should “outweigh” any perceived uncertainties in hosting a massive global event 11 years in advance.
Addressing the costs of infrastructure and transportation projects the city has lined up, Garcetti assured that upcoming city projects were not dependent on the bid, adding that the city is “modeling the Olympics around the city, and not modeling the city around the Olympics.”
Experts have said that rather than constructing new stadiums and arenas, LA could save billions by relying on existing venues such as the Staples Center, the Coliseum, and the StubHub Center. Additionally, rather than constructing a new Olympic Village, athletes and members of the media could be housed at the UCLA and USC campuses.
When asked whether he was upset the city lost the heavily-campaigned-for 2024 Olympic Games, Garcetti said that hosting 2028 is more beneficial to Angelenos.
“What we were able to negotiate — this deal was too good to pass up,” Garcetti said. “This legacy can inspire a whole new generation.” (Klarize Medenilla/AJPress)