Boston Mayor Martin Walsh joined Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday to discuss the end of Boston’s Olympic bid for 2024.

Martin Walsh

Martin Walsh

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh joined Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday to discuss the end of Boston’s Olympic bid for 2024. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

On Monday the United States Olympic Committee and Boston 2024 ‘€œjointly ended’€ Boston’€™s bid for the 2024 Olympics.

“Thinking back on the Olympic bid, it was a great opportunity that we had here in the city potentially,” Walsh said. “I still view it that way. But we just couldn’t make it work.”

When asked about his press conference on Monday, Walsh clarified his reasoning for not giving his stamp of approval to the bid and how he had anticipated the bid would affect Boston residents.

“My statement was the right thing to do to let people know that I was not just going to sign an agreement that potentially could cost the taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars if there were overruns, or if there were problems,” Walsh said. “I think the fact that we weren’t given an appropriate amount of time to be able to put a full bid together, that was unfortunate. New York and Los Angeles and Atlanta and Chicago, these other cities that went for the bid, they had a two-year period between the time they were selected by the USOC and when they had to put their application in to the IOC. … We were given several months.

“There were a lot of critics of the plan, and … a lot of it was based on taxpayers’ dollars. … I don’t think [taxpayers] fully understood what the commitment was by me or other people not to use taxpayers’ dollars. Certainly everyone knows today what the commitment was.”

Walsh said he didn’t think the bid was doomed from the start, however there were some aspects of the plan that bore too many potentially negative complications to ignore.

“I honestly felt that we could come up with a plan that would cover any overruns [the Olympic bid] might incur,” he said. “I looked at private developers building construction, the developer would have an insurance policy, the construction company would have an insurance policy and on top of that we were putting a blanket insurance policy to cover anything else. My concern was, ‘How do you cover it?’ I was unclear on, ‘How do you fully cover any potential overruns?’

“We talked to insurance companies and they were willing to look at it. Chicago had it down there and construction companies do it all the time, as do developers. They constantly have insurance in case of circumstances that are beyond the control of the construction project. So it happens already. But again, in the case of a company going bankrupt, that’s an unforeseen circumstance and the insurance covers that, but we weren’t able to get to that so I felt it was something that was important for us to finalize before I move forward.”

According to Walsh, he began to second-guess Boston 2024’s plan over the last week and a half, finally voicing his concerns at Monday’s press conference.

“I was optimistic until probably about a week and a half ago,” Walsh said. “I really felt that when Steve Pagliuca’s plan came out and he talked about his plan, I thought that it was a very good, solid plan. Obviously it would evolve and change. The revenue side of it I thought was a very good, well-thought and true plan as well. … When the [insurance plan] didn’t happen and then the USOC was starting to ask, ‘Where’s the Mayor in this?’ and one of the board members in the [Boston] Herald said yesterday, ‘We need the Mayor to be committed,’ if people didn’t realize that I was not committed to this thing then they wouldn’t know anything.

“I was actually excited about it. I thought that Boston hosting the Olympics would have been a great opportunity, but for about a week and a half now I thought that this thing was spinning our wheels here and we’re not gaining the traction we need on the ground. And then when they were insisting that I sign the document to cover any potential overruns, I knew that was something I wouldn’t do. … And that’s why yesterday happened.”

Instead of second-guessing what Boston 2024 could have done differently, Walsh suggests that the organization and the city should take lessons from the USOC bid experience.

“We all learned lessons. We were talking about building a $5 billion corporation in about three or four months here,” Walsh said. “Even City Hall, should we have been more involved at the higher level? Maybe. But I made it clear from the beginning that as mayor of the city of Boston, I’m going to continue to be mayor and the Olympics is only one piece of my day, not the entire day. For Steve Pagliuca, I would say there should be no regrets. He came in at a time and made some significant improvements and suggestions to the plan and some of those will be carried out afterwards.”

As far as Boston 2024’s plan for the renovation of the MBTA and Widett Circle are concerned, Walsh intends to incorporate the committee’s ideas into the city’s agenda in the future.

“We need to move forward with the T,” Walsh said. “There’s no question about that. The T needs to be upgraded, the T needs to be fixed. We’re talking about the city growing at an incredible clip, greater Boston is growing at a clip, and in order to grow economically you need to have a reliable, good and strong transportation system. I know the governor’s been working on that with the fiscal review board. He’s moving forward on that and at some point there will be an investment by the legislature and the governor to do something there.

“When it comes to Widett Circle, down the road we might be saying, ‘Thank god we had this conversation,’ because Widett Circle today generates about $800,000 in tax revenue and there’s potential when it’s fully built out to generate $150 million. We don’t necessarily need an Olympics to do that, but the Olympics got the conversation going, gave us some great ideas. Now we will look at that and pursue that and hopefully, potentially develop Widett Circle. When it comes to Harbor Point, there’s real potential down there to build additional housing as well as student housing for [University of Massachusetts-Boston], so some good conversation came out of this that we can incorporate into our Imagine Boston 2030 plan.”

Blog Author: 
Justin Pallenik
The Mayor joined us to discuss the cities failed bid.

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Conan steals jokes.

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Boston's Olympic bid is dead.

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[0:20:16] ... the breathless puff pieces run by the boat I'd bump kisses. And David Ortiz. Save the Olympia at Boston 20/20 fatal error it it won't be down for breakfast. But one question lingers where are we ...

Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Yankees at Rangers, 8:05 p.m. (FS1)
MLB: Athletics at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m. (MLB Network)


— The first female to serve as an NFL coach — albeit only for the preseason — is a former Boston College rugby player.

Jen Welter, who played 14 seasons in the Women’€™s Football Alliance, will join the Cardinals as a training camp/preseason intern to work with the team’€™s inside linebackers.

Welter, 37, has already coached men, serving as linebackers and special teams coach with the Texas Revolution of the Indoor Football League. She also played for the Revolution briefly, as a running back and special teams player in 2014 — becoming the first woman to play a non-kicking position in a pro men’€™s league when she had two carries for minus-3 yards in the Revolution’€™s opening game that season.

‘€œCoaching is nothing more than teaching,’€ Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said Monday in a story on the team’€™s website. ‘€œOne thing I have learned from players is, ‘€˜How are you going to make me better? If you can make me better, I don’€™t care if you’€™re the Green Hornet, man, I’€™ll listen.’€™ I really believe she’€™ll have a great opportunity with this internship through training camp to open some doors for her.’€

Added Arians: ‘€œShe came for an OTA and I met her and I thought she was the type of person that could handle this in a very positive way for women and open that door.’€

Arians noted that he talked to the team’€™s veteran players about Welter and ‘€œthey were all very cool with it.’€

Said Arians: ‘€œIt’€™s not going to be a distraction in any way.’€

Welter, who has a master’€™s degree in sports psychology and a PhD in psychology, is the second woman to join the league this offseason, as Sarah Thomas was hired as the first full-time female NFL official in April.

Tweeted Welter on Monday night: I am honored to be a part of this amazing team.

— Jonathan Martin, the victim in the Dolphins bullying scandal that dominated NFL news in 2013, reportedly will retire due to a back injury that would have required surgery for him to play again.

Tweeted’€™s Ian Rapoport: Former #Dolphins & #49ers OL Jonathan Martin is retiring, source said. A back injury means surgery, and he’€™s choosing to walk away.

Martin was traded from the Dolphins to the 49ers last offseason and started nine games, but he was released in March. One day later, he was picked up off waivers by the Panthers.

The 25-year-old from Stanford has played three NFL seasons, starting 32 games.

Larry Bird has proven to be a far better NBA executive than Michael Jordan, but the Celtics legend acknowledged Monday that MJ would win if the two suited up for a game.

‘€œI hate to admit this, but he’€™d kill me,’€ Bird said in an interview on ‘€œThe Dan Patrick Show.’€ ‘€œI’€™m 40 pounds more than I was when I played. I’€™m broken down. I really don’€™t care like I used to. I have a fight in me, but it’€™s not the fight that I once had. But it’€™d be a pretty close game.’€

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On July 28, 1983, the Rangers replaced which former Red Sox manager with which other former Sox skipper?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: ‘€œI strongly believe that bringing the Olympic Games back to the United States would be good for our country and would have brought long-term benefits to Boston. However, no benefit is so great that it is worth handing over the financial future of our city, and our citizens were rightly hesitant to be supportive as a result.’€ — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, after the United States Olympic Committee ended the city’€™s bid to host the 2024 Summer Games

STAT OF THE DAY: 13 — Consecutive seasons with 20 or more home runs for David Ortiz — who hit his 20th during Monday’€™s 10-8 loss to the White Sox — making him second to only Babe Ruth for the most consecutive 20-home run seasons in the American League

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): With the Cubs trailing by a run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Kris Bryant hits a two-run home run for a walkoff win over the Rockies.

Orioles batter Matt Wieters leads off the 11th inning with a walkoff home run against the Braves.

Rangers center fielder Leonys Martin steals a home run against the YankeesMark Teixeira.

Cubs second baseman Addison Russell dives for a grounder up the middle, pops up to his feet and throws to first for the out against the Rockies.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Don Zimmer was replaced by Darrell Johnson, the opposite of the situation in Boston in 1976

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Jonathan Edwards was born on this day in 1946.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar
Collin McGregor gets weird and wild with Tigers