LOS ANGELES — A Los Angeles city report says that the cost of building an Olympic Village for 17,000 athletes could significantly exceed estimates.
City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana and Chief Legislative Analyst Sharon Tsu issued a joint report Thursday night analyzing the city's bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games.
The analyst's report called the Los Angeles 2024 Exploratory Committee's bid a "conceptual overview with limited details of how the 2024 Games would be staged." The report came out ahead of City Council meetings planned for Friday to discuss the bid proposal released Aug. 25. The City Council has to vote to authorize the mayor to approve the bid.
LA24, a private non-profit group headed by Mayor Eric Garcetti and sports executive Casey Wasserman, released a 200-page report outlining a $5.8 billion plan that anticipates a $160 million revenue surplus from the Olympics. The analysts' report recommended that a memorandum of understanding be drawn up outlining the city's duties versus that of the non-profit.
The bid contains a high-level budget, general overview of transportation and brief descriptions of the proposed Olympic venues, according to Santana's and Tsu's report.
Without additional information, according to the report, "it is difficult to determine the fiscal impact and risk to the city of hosting the 2024 Games at this time."
Among items analysts found unclear in the bid were which companies or organizations will contribute the $1.7 billion anticipated from the private sector. It also questions how construction plans near the Los Angeles River - the proposed site for the Olympic Village - could affect a massive restoration project underway in the area.
The site for the Olympic Village, which would accommodate 17,000 athletes, is up in the air and could exceed the $925 million construction costs anticipated in the bid, according to the joint report. The proposed Olympic Village site near the Los Angeles River is on Union Pacific railroad land, and the railroad company appears disinclined to abandon its' rail yard for the Games, according to the report.
While city officials say they are in talks with the railroad to purchase the 125-acre property, the analysts' report suggests the city consider alternative sites. The report also suggests the bid needs to further flesh out development proposals for venues.
The analysts' report also suggested changes to the joinder, a legally binding agreement with the U.S. Olympic Committee, the City Council was expected to discuss today. The City Council has to vote to authorize the mayor to sign the document.
The USOC is expected to decide on whether to move forward with the Los Angeles bid before Sept. 15 and the International Olympic Committee will make its selection in 2017.