Projected costs of LA 2028 rocket to almost £7bn

The local organising committee of the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles has announced that the estimated costs of hosting the mega event have risen to $6.9bn (€6.1bn).

The Associated Press reports that the price tag is $1.36bn more than originally projected. The rise, however, is being attributed to revised inflation projections rather than spiralling costs. Most of the key figures have been only incrementally raised.

The previous costs were given in 2016 dollars, with the new costs designed to better reflect the value of the dollar at the time that it will be spent and received.

“We didn’t change the plan and we didn’t change the delivery of the plan,” committee chairman Casey Wasserman said, adding that the intent of the revised numbers was simply “to make sure there are no surprises.”

The majority of the non-inflation-related rises are costs associated with running the LA2028 LOCOG for four years longer than initially projected. LA was originally bidding for the 2024 Games, before the International Olympic Committee took the unprecedented step of awarding two consecutive Games at once, with Paris taking 2024 and 2028 going to LA.

The NOlympics group, which campaigned against the Games being held in Los Angeles, has expressed concern about the raised costs, however, as LA city and California state legislators have pledged to serve as a financial backstop, using taxpayer money to make up any shortfalls in funding.

“The updated Olympic budget, like the bid book itself, is a formality created by the rich business interests pushing this bid and doesn’t reflect the true costs of the Games,” the group said in a statement. “At the end of the day, regular Angelenos are going to pay for this project, in more profound ways than taxes.”

Part of the new budget includes $200 million in projected new cash from top IOC sponsors that would come in addition to $437m already budgeted. The budget also projects $2.51m in domestic sponsorship revenue. Much of this domestic revenue will be generated thanks to a unique commercial relationship with NBCUniversal.