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Study: 2024 Olympics Would Generate Billions In Economic Activity

A new study on the Boston 2024 bid finds the Olympics would inject billions of dollars into Massachusetts, but cost overruns are a risk.

The report — by the UMass Donahue Institute, and commissioned by The Boston Foundation — predicts more than 4,000 construction jobs would be created annually between 2018 and 2023, part of nearly $4 billion in new construction.

Further, the researchers "estimate that in the year of the Games, Olympic operational spending will create or support over 50,000 jobs in Massachusetts" and "operational spending activity will have a total impact of over $5 billion in the state economy during the year of the Olympics."

But the study also warns that cost overruns are a real risk.

"There is extensive research suggesting modern Olympic Games go significantly over budget," the report states. "Boston 2024 insists that they will not need any public dollars (save for infrastructure) to execute hosting the 2024 Summer Games. This assumption will need to be closely monitored over time. That said, most Olympics have had cost overruns in the multi-billions of dollars compared to original budgets."

The study's authors also caution that the existing bid is a "proof of concept," and that "[a]s Boston’s Olympic bid continues to evolve in the coming years, further research will be necessary to fully understand the impact of a possible Summer Olympics held in Boston."

This segment aired on March 18, 2015. The audio for this segment is not available.

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