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LA 2024 officials make progress with City Council, search for village site

The committee bidding to bring the 2024 Olympic Games to Los Angeles said Tuesday it is close to finalizing a working agreement with the City Council.

The “memorandum of understanding” would obligate LA 2024 to bring future key contracts before the council. It has received an ad hoc committee approval and soon will be presented to all council members, said Gene Sykes, the chief executive of LA 2024.

L.A.'s bid was the subject of much debate during the summer, with some local politicians concerned about a “host contract” that ultimately would hold the city responsible for cost overruns.

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LA 2024 has projected a budget that could exceed $6 billion. The committee estimates revenues and private-sector partnerships would cover all costs, leaving a $160-million surplus.

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Speaking to reporters after a meeting with the U.S. Olympic Committee on Tuesday, Sykes said two dozen potential sites for the expensive athletes’ village have been narrowed to less than a handful.

The list still includes a downtown rail property known as Piggyback Yard. City budget analysts have expressed concern about the cost and complexity of redeveloping the heavily industrial parcel.

“We’re making good progress,” Sykes said of his group’s search for a viable site. “The analysis we have to do is pretty painstaking.”

LA 2024 will deliver its plans to the International Olympic Committee in segments, leaving time for discussion and revisions before a final bid is submitted.

Paris, Rome and Budapest also are in the running for the 2024 Games. The IOC is scheduled to select a host in the summer of 2017.

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