The U.S. Olympic Committee announced on Thursday that it has chosen Boston as its bid city to host the 2024 Summer Olympics. Supporters of the bid have cited Boston’s compact infrastructure as a main advantage that would make it ideal to host the games, ESPN reports. Also, the proposed operating budget is tiny by Olympic standards—estimated at around $5 billion—and most of the venues that would be involved either already exist (the city’s many college stadiums) or would not stand permanently.
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh told ESPN that the selection was “an exceptional honor.”
“This selection is in recognition of our city’s talent, diversity, and global leadership,” he said. “Our goal is to host an Olympic and Paralympic Games that are innovative, walkable, and hospitable to all. Boston hopes to welcome the world’s greatest athletes to one of the world’s great cities.”
It is by no means a done deal. There are several viable candidate cities in other countries and strong local opposition to hosting the games in Boston. Some residents are concerned that the city could find itself in a similar situation as Chicago, which spent $100 million on a losing bid to host the 2016 Olympic Games, ESPN reports.
A similar call for caution was urged in a Thursday editorial in the Boston Globe, which noted an “inordinate secrecy” in the early moves of the city’s Olympic boosters.
“Above all, there can be no presumption that the city’s invitation to bid means that Boston must actually do so,” according to the editorial. “Backers may attempt to create a sense of inevitability—who wants to be the stick in the mud?—but Boston deserves better than that.”