Olympics come with a big risk

first_imgEvery four years, the number of days on the calendar goes from 365 to 366, the United states elects or re-elects a president and the Summer Olympics kick off.  Now, with less than six months until the 2020 Summer Olympics, I want to focus my column this semester on the games. Whether that’s spotlighting different players, sociopolitical issues or USC’s long history with the Olympics, I want to offer my analysis and opinion on the upcoming event. The Olympics provides any host worldwide recognition. For the 2016 Summer Olympics, the International Olympic Committee estimated that around 3.5 billion viewers worldwide tuned in, according to The Hollywood Reporter. That was about half the world’s population at the time. The 2012 Games were when sprinter Usain Bolt was in his prime and swimmer Michael Phelps announced his first retirement after the Games concluded. I also discovered several new sports through that year’s Olympics — sports that I didn’t even know existed, like shooting and equestrian. I’ve lived through five Olympics but because I didn’t become a sports fan until later in my life, I only remember the last two.  As a new decade begins, I’m looking forward to the last of those three — the Olympics, which will take place from July 24 to Aug. 9. The Summer Games will be held in Tokyo, Japan, marking the return of the Olympics to a city that hasn’t hosted it since 1964.  The Olympics helps renovate a city and gives it a new look. When my hometown Tacoma hosted the 2015 U.S. Open for golf, the whole city turned itself around. Now, even five years later, Tacoma looks so much better for it.  If the numbers repeat themselves, the prospects for Tokyo to garner the attention it’s hoping for appear good. Once the Olympics concludes, the televised coverage of the games will make more people inclined to visit Tokyo.center_img The city that hosts the Olympics also has to construct or renovate many stadiums and buildings specifically for the games. The merits of this are controversial, but I think it’ll be good for the city. It pushes Tokyo to build new infrastructure and motivates the rest of the city to clean up in expectation of millions of visitors. With that said, Tokyo is more than ready to host its second ever Summer Olympics. Not only will the city etch its name in the history books, but it’ll also enjoy plenty of benefits from simply hosting the Games.  This isn’t to say that hosting the Olympics will guarantee a profit. In 2016, Rio de Janeiro spent more than $20 billion to get ready. The hope was that the games would reinvigorate the city, but, unfortunately, many of the venues are now abandoned. The Olympics can also create much-needed profit for a city. After Los Angeles earned $215 million revenue from the 1984 Olympics, the number of cities submitting bids to host the Games jumped from two to 12 by 2004.  Tokyo is expected to spend approximately $26 billion when all said is done — about $20 billion more than what the city originally predicted according to the Los Angeles Times. However, it doesn’t look like Tokyo will be struggling financially — the city is holding lottery applications for tickets since they sold out.  Tokyo is built to handle events like this, and in my opinion, the city is more than ready to handle the political and financial challenges it is likely going to face leading up to the games.last_img read more