Los Angeles‘ pitch for the 2024 Olympics could bring soccer to the Rose Bowl, as discussions to use the facility are underway.
The campaign to attract the 2024 Olympics to Los Angeles has heated up, and organizers are floating a variety of concepts to use facilities in and around the region. The LA Memorial Coliseum could be renovated to host a variety of events, and USC baseball’s Dedeaux Field may be temporarily repurposed to host aquatics events.
In planning for soccer, Los Angeles could have some other options, particularly with Los Angeles FC’s stadium set to open in 2018. However, the Rose Bowl is being considered as a viable venue to host at least eight games during the Olympics.
Renovations would need to be made, as the Rose Bowl is primarily home to UCLA Bruins football at this point in its life. The Rose Bowl last hosted soccer on a full-time basis in 2002–the LA Galaxy’s last season at the facility–and the 2024 Olympics would come 40 years after the stadium last hosted Olympic action.
The Los Angeles Olympic organization would be responsible for the improvements. The proposal seems to be gaining traction with the Rose Bowl Operating Committee, which is working with the City of Pasadena to move the idea forward. One issue, however, could be the number of games, which are above a limit that is set by a Pasadena ordinance. More from Pasadena Now:
The proposed eight matches would push the number of so-called “displacement” events in the Rose Bowl over the maximum number allowed by city code, and would require Council authorization.
It is unclear how local homeowners and neighborhood associations who previously rejected the NFL’s bid to bring the Los Angeles Rams to Pasadena will feel about bringing the Olympics to the Rose Bowl.
“In general, the events in the Rose Bowl are probably a good thing for the city but it certainly does have an impact on those neighbors, and that’s an issue,” said Jonathan Edewards, President of the Downtown Pasadena Neighborhood Association.
Events have developed so rapidly that West Pasadena Residents Association President Kenyon Harbison said his organization, as of Friday, had “not yet had the opportunity to evaluate and talk about this as a board.”
At this point the biggest task for the Los Angeles Olympic organization is to secure the games, and the host city will not be announced until September 13, 2017. If Los Angeles does secure the Olympics, its existing round of sports facilities will be on the table, and that could include the Rose Bowl.
Image courtesy of the Rose Bowl.