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ALL 5 US "candidates" have deficiencies


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The way I interpreted this article from the L.A. Times about the USOC's visit to Los Angeles, I got that all 5 cities have "deficiencies."

I think that San Francisco, Philadelphia and Chicago all have main Olympic stadium issues, and surely other issues also.  And along with these issues, Houston, is, well, Houston.  When L.A. didn't even make it past the first round for 2012, the rumor was that the USOC wanted a new plan for the Olympic Village, not utilizing the dorms at USC and UCLA, as in 1984 (in '84, even the dorms at UC Santa Barbara were used as a satellite Olympic Village, for the rowing teams, because the rowing venue in '84 was way up at Lake Casitas; the 2012 rowing venue would have been at the Marine Stadium in Long Beach, which was the venue during the 1932 Games).  This L.A. Times article seems to confirm this.

I personally don't want the US to host another summer Olympics for a while, I'd rather see an Istanbul 2016 or Buenos Aires... some place more "exotic."  Or just DIFFERENT.  This is why I'm glad Beijing got 2008.

From the Los Angeles Times:

With an Eye on 2016, USOC Visits L.A.

Officials from the governing body are considering a bid for the Summer Games that will be awarded in 2009.

By Alan Abrahamson, Times Staff Writer

May 19, 2006

The U.S. Olympic Committee, gauging whether to launch a bid for the 2016 Summer Games, paid a visit Thursday to Los Angeles City Hall, chairman Peter Ueberroth touting Los Angeles as "exciting" but cautioning that, as with all potential Olympic candidates, it needs to address "deficiencies."

Later, the USOC made a similar stop at San Francisco City Hall.

The USOC's whirlwind visits Thursday wrapped up a swing through five U.S. cities — Chicago, Philadelphia and Houston had visits last week — intended to measure business, government and political interest, assess stadiums and other facilities and inform local leaders the USOC intends to direct any 2016 bid.

"We have not decided whether we're going to bid or not. We may not bid at all," Ueberroth said at a news conference at Los Angeles City Hall, adding a moment later, "L.A.'s an exciting city. This whole region is an exciting place to be. But it all gets down to 60 votes," roughly the number needed in the 115-member International Olympic Committee for a city to win.

The IOC will pick the 2016 city in 2009. A U.S. candidate would be considered a strong contender after Games in Europe in 2012 (London), Asia in 2008 (Beijing), Europe in 2004 (Athens) and Australia in 2000.

The most recent Summer Games in the U.S. were staged in Atlanta in 1996. Salt Lake City played host to the 2002 Winter Games.

New York finished fourth in last year's election for the 2012 Games, in part because the USOC was — and remains — embroiled in a simmering dispute with influential Olympic figures abroad over the USOC's long-time special shares of key IOC television and marketing revenues.

If that dispute can be resolved, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago figure to be leading contenders.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's communications director, Adam Mendelsohn said, "Whether it is San Francisco or Los Angeles, the governor wants the 2016 Olympics in California and sees this as an incredible opportunity to showcase this amazing state to the world."

San Francisco hasn't played host to the Games. It must come up with a stadium plan. "Tune in to us in due time," said Scott Givens, a senior organizer of the 2002 Salt Lake Games now backing a San Francisco campaign.

At San Francisco City Hall Thursday afternoon, the discussion "centered on how can an American city win on the international stage," Mayor Gavin Newsom said afterward in a telephone interview.

"And the more you think of San Francisco iconically, think of it in terms of its values, its diversity … the more apt you are to look right at San Francisco."

Los Angeles played host to the 1984 and 1932 Summer Games. Ueberroth, now based in Newport Beach, ran the 1984 L.A. organizing committee and produced a $232.5-million surplus.

He said Thursday in Los Angeles that the 2016 mix thus proves sensitive for him: "If we go forward with another city … I'll be chastised. If this city was selected, I'll certainly be chastised."

Since 1984, the Los Angeles area has added a variety of new venues that enhance the facilities picture — the Arrowhead Pond, for instance. Virtually all venues are built, so construction costs to ready for a Games figure to be extraordinarily low by recent Olympic standards, perhaps $150 million or less.

Any such expenditure would figure to be funded privately.

L.A.'s "deficiencies," not outlined Thursday in public, nonetheless remain plain: A "been there, done that" feel in some circles to a third L.A. Games. The need for a new Olympic village to replace or supplement dorms at UCLA and USC. And, finally, negative publicity abroad for years — including the 1992 riots, the 1994 Northridge earthquake and the mid-1990s O.J. Simpson murder trials.

At the same time, L.A. offers a considerable upside:

•  An energetic new mayor who can stand comfortably on the international stage, Antonio Villaraigosa, who pointedly addressed TV crews Thursday in Spanish and English, touching repeatedly on the L.A. 2016 tagline: "This is the city where the world comes together."

•  The possibility of engaging Hollywood and touting a convergence of sports and entertainment.

•  And, potentially key, the possibility of another huge surplus that could be shared with international sports federations and other national Olympic committees — perhaps a way for the USOC to make a case for itself as a generous Olympic citizen.

"We need to be humble as a country, as an Olympic committee and as a city," Ueberroth said. "At the same time," if there is to be a bid, "we have to sell ourselves and try to win.

"It's a complex situation."

 

From the L.A. Times...

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well what bid doesn't have "deficiencies"?.....I mean they all do regardless of the race...the thing is for them not to have a large gaping one....

I think the Olympic stadium is an issue in many of the new commers (Philly and Chicago)...and I believe the three return bids we have from 2012 (LA, SF, Houston) didn't pass then, and certainly won't pass now due to numerous technical problems (SF), international status promblems (Houston), or just been there done that (LA)....

my conclusion....the USOC is definately approaching 2016 extremely carefully....at this point I wouldn't be shocked at all if they bid...but also wouldn't be shocked if they didn't (although a bit surprised)....I also think it is really down to either Philly or Chicago...the city that can 100% guarantee all of their projects (especially the Olympic stadium) and has the most compact and technically strong bid, coupled with full support, enthusiasm from all sectors and the least amount of venues to build will win....and I believe that city will be Philly

we just have to see...again the USOC and NYC surprised me when NYC wasn't bidding again, and I again wouldn't be shcoked if they didn't bid....this is a new game with new rules that we haven't seen before...

it is interesting to think who will win if the USA doesn't bid for 2016

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Hmmmm. Actually, the way the USOC has been playing it, you're probably right and it's not impossible that the USA won't bid. That would sure open things up, but it would be ironic that a cycle where North America has its best chance for a long time, both Canada and the USA opt out.
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Even if the USOC does decide to make a bid for 2016 I don't think, with the present list of cities, that they would be the overwhelming favourite that was predicted after the 2012 vote last July.  Reading about each of the five US candidates, and what they offer at this early stage, somehow I don't see the IOC backing any of them in great number.  

Tokyo and even Madrid and Rome are likely to promise the earth to get the Games in their cities - the American cities don't seem able to do that.  The absence of any significant central funding, due to their citizens lack of enthusiasm to spend taxation on these events, and the reluctance to provide new venues, due to the limited interest in many Olympic events, would surely be a handicap for any of these US cities, add to that the fear within the IOC of another Atlanta due to large scale private funding leading to an inevitable over-commercialization, I really feel there are too many factors against a US city at this time.  The absence of New York from the list of candidates has also resulted in an absence of any allure anyway.

If one of these five cities really wants a chance of holding the 2016 Olympics they must look at the other successful bids of recent years, as perhaps the Chicago mayor has  - Sydney, Athens, Beijing and London, all have offered bids including major building projects of multiple venues.  Though from what I've read of the US cities so far, none of them are capable or willing to do this - this will be unfortunate for the US as other cities around the world will be willing.

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Though from what I've read of the US cities so far, none of them are capable or willing to do this - this will be unfortunate for the US as other cities around the world will be willing.

It just goes to show that the Games, grand as they may be, aren't the central thing in US life and it's not going for-bust, like Greece-Athens, that is the priority.

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Though from what I've read of the US cities so far, none of them are capable or willing to do this - this will be unfortunate for the US as other cities around the world will be willing.

It just goes to show that the Games, grand as they may be, aren't the central thing in US life and it's not going for-bust, like Greece-Athens, that is the priority.

Then perhaps this is the wrong time for America to put forward a candidate for the Summer Games - the prospect of holding an Olympics is central to people in many other nations.

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As always, many good points Stu.  :cool:

Sydney and Athens are studies in massive building for a two week party resulting in a collection of white elephants and taxpayer burden.  Vancouver is being covered by the government as well and so far it appears that they will be going way over budget by the time they host 2010.  However, due to the influx of Canadians and Americans who will attend those games, they may make a profit.  

That is not how we do things in the U.S.  Our goal is, and has always been to host an Olympics and make a profit, not burdening the taxpayers.  So far that formula has worked well.  I do not think now is the time to change that philosophy and expect taxpayers to foot the bill for an event that 99% of Americans will not see or benefit from in person just to appease the IOC. The Olympics are not a priority here.

If it ever came down to the games having to be taxpayer supported then I would not want the games held in this country.  The exception would be if they are taxed on a local level, since those individuals will benefit directly from the hosting of the games and all the revenues that go along with it.  As an example, if San Francisco wins, then I could see a special tax for the Bay Area counties since all of them will benefit from the games in one form or another.  That I wouldn't mind paying.  But I should not be expected to pay anything for any of the other 4 candidate cities if they happen to win 2016.

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Sydney and Athens are studies in massive building for a two week party resulting in a collection of white elephants and taxpayer burden.  

Just want to correct you on the Sydney thing, mate.

 :)

The Sydney venues are now all pretty well making a profit (Superdome is even now the second highest grossing indoor arena in the world after Madison Square Garden). The ongoing costs now are about $5 million for some of the specialised venues (equestrian, shooting and the velodrome) and the annual cost of maintaining the Olympic Park parklands _ which is almost exactly the same cost as the yearly maintenance budget for NY's Central Park. The White Elephant tag is now dated.

I think the problem now for the USOC is that the IOC are now pretty well demanding a public-private partnership for games funding. It does seem to be one of the big thorns in relations between the USOC and IOC.

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I really can't see how the IOC has the gall to demand gov't funding for a US Games when, except for Lake Placid 1980, the 3 US cities have delivered exceptional Games that have been privately funded AND solvent, put a bit of lucre in IOC coffers and have NOT left the local populace with bills to pay.  Ueberroth is right in saying to them: if our way of doing it is not good enough, then...see ya later.  They really have to clean the IOC of those old farts.
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i have an opinion although ignorant in parts...that the olympics games are/is a large affair...its a big gigantic event that any city dares to host...i dont really care if a city did not plan out a legacy for their venues..thats seriously their issue...sydney hosted a magnificent games, that really set a model and standard for many games to come..they were downright fantastic...sydney's venues are now well used but even if they were not...seriously its their issue and the white elephants of athens are hardly getting the media attention you would expect...its up to each city to sort out their venues and ensure they are sustainable but i really dont feel sorry for future hosts who dont use temporary areans and pavillions and do spend vasts amounts of money on glamorous venues they cant really afford...heck id say go all out as much as you can..this is something we wont ever be able to control...to the locals who have lived through the games...of course the post games benefits would be of importance to them..but to the rest of the world...most just remember the great games...

so i say SO what if a city has white elephants..its their issues and their fault..and people will still remember the athens games for famous and infamous reasons...

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Actually, the more I think about this - I think the US is going about it too cautiously.  I mean who cares if a city goes into debt for $1 or $2 billion to put on an Olympics?  I mean the entire nation is in the deficit of trillions -- yet we see nothing?  At least with a $1-2 billion debt, yeah, maybe we'll see another set of great Games and plenty of fireworks!!  Yes, I say screw the books and go for broke!!  I must get that off to Peter and Bob!!
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Actually, the more I think about this - I think the US is going about it too cautiously.  I mean who cares if a city goes into debt for $1 or $2 billion to put on an Olympics?  I mean the entire nation is in the deficit of trillions -- yet we see nothing?  At least with a $1-2 billion debt, yeah, maybe we'll see another set of great Games and plenty of fireworks!!  Yes, I say screw the books and go for broke!!  I must get that off to Peter and Bob!!

Now THAT's the spirit! THAT'S what the IOC likes to hear!

It's looking for the good 'ol enthusiastic Yankee can-do spirit (apologies to any southerners) not the endless pettifogging squabbles over money!!  :;):

Who would ever plan to enjoy themselves at a party if they were frightened of the hangover next morning??  :P

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  • 3 weeks later...

All the cities do have deficiencies

If the USOC goes with one of the cities, I think they'll go with Houston.

San Francisco had more than a stadium problem, they had a venue plan problem.

Chicago has no stadium and we just went down this road. Philly is in the same boat, but I think they may have some options.

LA would be perfect if it hadn't hosted in 84 and wasn't what LA is now.

Houston's only drawback is its international standing

Man I wish DC was in this

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All the cities do have deficiencies

If the USOC goes with one of the cities, I think they'll go with Houston.

San Francisco had more than a stadium problem, they had a venue plan problem.

Chicago has no stadium and we just went down this road. Philly is in the same boat, but I think they may have some options.

LA would be perfect if it hadn't hosted in 84 and wasn't what LA is now.

Houston's only drawback is its international standing

Man I wish DC was in this

LA's infrastructure is better now than it was in 1984.

Weather is also Houston's drawback... as is Chicago's and Philly's. I've been to Chicago and Philly in the summer and MAN WAS IT HOT AND HUMID. But "hot and humid" doesn't seem to play a factor when it comes to the IOC choosing a summer host city.

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LA's infrastructure is better now than it was in 1984.

Weather is also Houston's drawback... as is Chicago's and Philly's. I've been to Chicago and Philly in the summer and MAN WAS IT HOT AND HUMID. But "hot and humid" doesn't seem to play a factor when it comes to the IOC choosing a summer host city.

I wasn't speaking in terms of infrastructure because I know it's there for LA. I'm talking about the attitude of the citizens. If the citizens aren't excited about football in LA, then they can't possibly be too excited about the Olympics.

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All the cities do have deficiencies

If the USOC goes with one of the cities, I think they'll go with Houston.

San Francisco had more than a stadium problem, they had a venue plan problem.

Chicago has no stadium and we just went down this road. Philly is in the same boat, but I think they may have some options.

LA would be perfect if it hadn't hosted in 84 and wasn't what LA is now.

Houston's only drawback is its international standing

Man I wish DC was in this

Chicago i nthe summer can get really bad... usually in july. But by august, the temperatures cool down and make the city really beautiful.

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I wasn't speaking in terms of infrastructure because I know it's there for LA. I'm talking about the attitude of the citizens. If the citizens aren't excited about football in LA, then they can't possibly be too excited about the Olympics.

But according to a recent survey, a very high percentage of Angelenos polled would favor and support an Olympics in LA for 2016.

The Los Angeles area is a place with many diversions/things to do, that's why it seems nobody really mourned when the NFL left LA, unlike what might happen in other American cities where football seems to be a really big deal. In LA there's still college football, of course, the Rose Bowl, etc, and other sports going on.

Many people in Pasadena were/are against the Rose Bowl being used for the NFL, but according to another poll, if the Olympics came to LA, Pasadenans would gladly have the Rose Bowl used as an Olympic venue, as it has in past Olympics (in 1932 the Rose Bowl was used as the velodrome; in 1984 it was used for the soccer finals).

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I wasn't speaking in terms of infrastructure because I know it's there for LA. I'm talking about the attitude of the citizens. If the citizens aren't excited about football in LA, then they can't possibly be too excited about the Olympics.

I think L.A. is the exception in that scenario.

I used to hang out in L.A. a lot and never heard anything but positive statements about the '84 Games. I think they would probably one of the most receptive cities to hosting out of the five.

And as for them not liking football - check out any USC games - the Coliseum is almost filled to capacity most of the time!

BTW - I forgot to tell you guys this. The secretary I went to trial with recently was a tall flag girl at the opening and closing of the '84 games. She still has her flag. B)

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