Los Angeles is “close to reaching an agreement,” with the US Olympic Committee to become America’s candidate to host the 2024 Olympics, the LA Times reports.
LA mayor Eric Garcetti decided to push for the bid after Boston, the initial US candidate, dropped out last month. Unlike Boston, LA has promised to cover the near-inevitable budget overruns, which could push the price tag for the event even higher than the expected cost of $4 billion.
Garcetti said he can’t eliminate the risk of spending more than planned, but argued that because the city would host many of the events at existing venues, built for the 1984 Olympics, LA could potentially make a profit.
The total budget for the games, including a contingency plan, would be $4.5 billion, which usually includes a sizable contribution from the International Olympic Committee. The London 2012 Olympics had similar budget projections, but ended up costing around $15 billion.
The IOC is pushing for a cheaper Olympics after resentment over the costly Beijing and Sochi games, and LA may just be that less expensive option. If it is chosen by the USOC, it will contend with cities such as Paris, Rome, Hamburg and Budapest.
LA is also selling itself as a city with Olympic history—its Coliseum was the host stadium in both 1932 and 1984. “Los Angeles is the ideal Olympic city,” Garcetti told the New York Times. Unlike Boston residents, Angelenos are mostly supportive of the bid—though if Olympic history is any judge, that support may evaporate as the true cost becomes apparent.
The US Olympic Committee will make a decision by mid-September.