By Anjli Raval and Shannon Bond in New York
One of the biggest disappointments of Michael Bloomberg’s tenure as mayor was his failure to lure the Olympic flame to New York. Now one of his closest lieutenants, and the architect of the 2012 bid, is pitching a fresh case for bringing the 2024 summer games to the city.
Daniel Doctoroff, a deputy mayor under Mr Bloomberg and now chief executive of the eponymous financial data service, has submitted a proposal to New York State governor Andrew Cuomo that trumpets the transformative effect the games would have on the city.
Focused on Mr Cuomo’s home borough of Queens, the proposal being promoted by Mr Doctoroff hopes to win backing from politicians for an Olympic bid by arguing that it would kick-start a wave of development similar to the burst of construction seen in east London in 2012 after it won the games.
“The Olympics could be a catalyst for economic development,” said a spokesperson for Mr Doctoroff, who is acting in a personal capacity.
He hopes to transform 167-acres of rail yard, move the city’s only convention centre from Manhattan to Queens and build tens of thousands of housing units.
Mr Cuomo is “seriously assessing the viability of an Olympic bid for New York City”, according to a person familiar with the situation. Talks between representatives of the governor and Mr Bloomberg’s successor as mayor, Bill de Blasio, are taking place, and it is likely that an advisory committee will be formed soon, this person said.
Mr Doctoroff, in charge of economic development under Mr Bloomberg, led the city’s $3bn bid for the 2012 games, which was lost after the state refused to fund the centrepiece stadium.
This time Mr Doctoroff may not be able to count on the support of the new mayor. Mr de Blasio has been cool on the idea of bringing the Olympics to New York, which would incur a hefty price tag. A spokesman for the mayor said a bid was “not something the administration is considering at this time”.
Even if the 2024 games ultimately go elsewhere, the city could still benefit from the planning. Much of the redevelopment and construction proposed during the 2012 bid was carried out despite the games going to London, says Mitchell Moss, professor of urban planning at New York University. ( FT)