spent over 30 years paying off its $1.5 billion debt following the 1975 Summer Olympics. Greece’s hit a record high of 5.3 percent in 2004 after a disastrous $8.6 billion shortfall after the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens.
It’s safe to say that Vancouver will not experience a post-Olympic financial catastrophe like those experienced in Montreal and Athens. It’s no secret, however, that Vancouver’s Olympic organizers overspent the Games’ financial budget. For years, VANOC President that the original budget would not cover the committee’s plans.
The total cost of the Games remains unknown, but a number of organizations have speculated costs in recent months:
- A recent stated that Olympic Village cost approximately $1-billion to build.
- The same report also stated that the Olympic/Paralympic Centre in Hillcrest Park cost $84.45-million
- The provincial and federal that security would cost $900-million
So, the Olympics cost VANOC and its financial supporters (municipal, provincial and federal governments) a substantial amount of money. Taxpayers will face tighter budgets and funding cutbacks in the years to come in order to avoid the 1976 Montreal-esque
Whatever the official cost, Vancouver should focus on what can be gained from the 2010 Olympic Games and how the ‘host city experience’ can benefit the city and the province in the future. From the construction of the to the development of Athletes’ Village and the new , Vancouver and surrounding areas have received a great amount of new infrastructure as a result of the Games.The City of Vancouver must capitalize on its newly acquired infrastructure in order to carry on the legacy of the Games. By promoting tourism, for example, the city’s Olympic experience can be transformed into a socially and economically beneficial venture in the long run.
A look back on the financial balances of past Olympic host cities demonstrates both positive and negative experiences: