Olympic bid group seeks to bolster public support

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BOSTON (AP) — Organizers of Boston's effort to host the 2024 Olympics said Monday they would not submit a final bid to for the games unless a majority of Massachusetts residents were supportive.

Boston 2024 ran a full-page ad in The Boston Globe and the Boston Herald on Monday, laying out what the privately-funded group said were the 10 principles that form the basis of the city's bid.

Among them were using the Olympics as a catalyst to improve public transportation, create tens of thousands of jobs and spur development of affordable housing, according to the ad.

Other tenets included a multi-layered insurance plan to "protect the city and state from financial risk."

One recent poll conducted for WBUR-FM of more than 500 Boston-area residents showed 36 percent supported the Olympic bid, while 52 percent were opposed and the rest undecided.

"We believe the 2024 Games fit into the long-term planning goals of the city, and will create jobs, economic development and affordable housing," Richard Davey, the organization's chief executive, said in a statement Monday. "We also want to be clear that we are only in this if we have a majority of the people in Massachusetts behind us prior to submitting our final bid to the International Olympic Committee."

In a recent interview with The Associated Press, Davey said the IOC wants to award the games to a city that is supportive and would welcome the athletes.

It was not clear how Boston 2024 would measure public support.

Evan Falchuk, who ran for governor last year under the banner of the United Independent Party, has proposed a question for the November 2016 state ballot that would bar the use of state taxpayer money for the Olympics.

The IOC is expected to award the games in 2017. Rome and Hamburg, Germany, are among other prospective bidders.