How Boston Plans to Host the 2024 Olympics Games

Last week Boston secured its bid to represent the US as a contending host city for the 2024 summer Olympic games. The possibility poses great potential opportunities for the city of Boston, but not without significant draw backs.

Most challenging but perhaps most beneficial will be the rebuilding of the T. In and out of talks and conjecture for the last 20 years, hosting the Olympics would solidify plans to update the T system – a move that would revitalize Boston into a seriously modern city. Other new developments could include an Olympic village able to be repurposed into university housing after the games, and a new Olympic stadium designed to transform into a scaled back home for the New England Revolution soccer team, among other smaller scale projects and facilities.

However, many have expressed concerns in regards to hosting the 2024 Olympics in Boston, siting issues with old and at-capacity infrastructure channels, preexisting over-crowdedness, and the strain the games would inevitably take on taxpayer money, disproportionately affecting lower income residents.

Boston has proposed a budget of about 5 billion dollars for the games – a startlingly low figure. Siting the city’s plethora of university arenas, stadiums, and fields, much of the games can piggy back on existing infrastructure, dramatically reducing costs. In looking to recent history however, exceeding initial budget projections is not only overwhelming but commonplace, in many cases budgets tripling or quadrupling initially proposed figures. Furthermore, Boston itself has an especially unfavorable precedent for far exceeding budget plans, namely The “Big Dig” project, costing almost 6 times initial projections.

Modernizing the Boston city-scape with some fresh architecture and new public transit systems while boosting local businesses and developments are clear benefits to hosting the games – but will these benefits outweigh the drawbacks? This much can be for sure; hosting the Olympics here in Boston would pose exciting new changes to our historic city. The International Olympic Committee is set to decide the winning city to host the games in 2017, and till then you can be sure the debate will be as lively as the games themselves.

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