Although the LA28 Summer Olympic Games are still more than five years away, there has been a concerning drop in enthusiasm among residents of Los Angeles.
A recent poll conducted by Suffolk University and the Los Angeles Times showed 57 percent of Angelenos feel the LA28 Summer Games will be good for the city.
While that number may not appear to be too much of a worry, previous polls showed optimism running 20 to 25 percentage points higher.
Los Angeles is set to host the Olympic Games for a third time in 2028, and they will join their place beside London and Paris as the only cities to host the Summer Olympics three times. Los Angeles previously hosted in 1932 and 1984.
A full 20 percent worry “hosting the Games will have a negative impact on the city.” That concern is far more prevalent in younger residents as opposed to older ones who possibly remember the resounding success of the 1984 Games.
The Los Angeles 1984 Games turned a profit of over $220 million, a rather remarkable achievement given the fact the Games dealt with a Soviet Union-led boycott that saw 14 Eastern Bloc countries skip the event. By comparison, the Montreal 1976 Games just eight years prior, were widely considered a financial disaster for the city.
Chief among the concerns of those polled were “worries about diverting attention away from pressing issues like homelessness,” as well as “previous host cities accumulating large deficits.”
The Tokyo 2020 Games price tag was roughly $13 billion, nearly double the initial estimate. The Tokyo Organizing Committee said taxpayers would be responsible for 55 percent of that cost.
LA28 organizers have said the Games will use many of the city’s existing venues, with virtually no new construction required. Sustainability of venues has been a key initiative for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in regards to future host city bids.
City of Los Angeles and State of California legislators have agreed to cover any financial deficit for events. They estimate a cost of $7 billion for the 2028 Games.
In 2017 the IOC awarded the 2024 Summer Games to Paris and the 2028 Summer Games to Los Angeles during their 131st IOC Session in Lima, Peru.
“This historic double allocation is a ‘win-win-win’ situation for the city of Paris, the city of Los Angeles and the IOC,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in 2017.
“It is hard to imagine something better. Ensuring the stability of the Olympic Games for the athletes of the world for the next 11 years is something extraordinary.”
While only 27 percent of those polled said they were “very excited” about LA28, it wouldn’t be surprising to see that number increase during and after the Paris 2024 Games as the Olympics can be a hard sell in non-Olympic years.
The poll conducted by Suffolk University and the Los Angeles Times interviewed 500 adult residents of Los Angeles with a margin of sampling error at +/- 4.4 percent.