Why Doesn't Boston Want To Host The Olympics?

As a major diss to the United States Olympic Committee, Boston doesn't want to host the 2024 Summer Olympics. Chosen by the USOC as the candidate for America's Olympic bid in January, Boston residents are skeptical and support from within the city is already dwindling. Hosting the Olympics is expensive after all, and draws huge crowds to already crowded cities.

The New York Times reported on Thursday that Boston residents think the money that would go toward hosting the Games should be used for more pressing issues, like improving schools and social programs. Very pragmatic, those Bostonians. They're also worried about traffic, as Boston could really do without thousands more drivers on its roads.

Boston's Olympic bid, put together by local business and construction leaders and politicians, was presented to the USOC in December and the committee chose Boston over San Francisco, Washington D.C., and L.A., which has already hosted the Games twice. The intro to the bid reads: "Boston is overwhelmingly united in its bid for the 2024 Games because we are a city passionate about the power of sport." While it may be right about Bostonians loving sports, it was apparently wrong about the united support.

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A recent poll conducted by Boston radio station WBUR shows that support for hosting the 2024 Games dropped from 51 percent of Bostonians in support of the Games in January to 44 percent in February. That's a seven percent decrease in only a month. A participant in the poll, Sheila Connolly, said to WBUR:

I oppose it. Especially now with the snow and how crazy the T is. I can only imagine better things to spend money on in Boston. It’s suspect, the whole thing.

The "T" is what Bostonians call the city's metro. Boston is slowly recovering from the mountains of snow dumped on the city this winter, totaling 108 inches. The city is also still reeling from the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and the Big Dig highway project has people suspicious of large-scale construction, as it ended up costing $14.8 billion by the time it was finished in December 2007, according to USA Today. Hosting the Olympics would no doubt mean more over-the-top construction projects.

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If Boston puts the decision to a statewide vote in November 2016, the USOC would have already submitted its bid to the International Olympic Committee, meaning a "no" vote would be embarrassing for the USOC and leave the U.S. without a valid bid. Other cities have voted down the Olympic Games before, including Munich and Krakow, so it would have been much safer to pick a city that actually wanted the Games.

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