The Greater Boston Area is known as a walking city, which was a significant selling point for the city’s 2024 Summer Olympics bid, which promised to deliver “the most walkable Games in modern times.”
But after several residents have told the organizers to take a long walk off a short pier, Boston 2024 unveiled a 2.0 plan that now spread the events out all over the bay state.
Those who stood to reap the benefits of hosting various events are all for it, much more so than many of the city’s residents.
New Bedford scooped up the sailing events, originally slated for Boston Harbor, some 60 miles south of Boston on June 4.
“The sailors who will be here nine years from now know that there is no better place, not just in Massachusetts, but in all of America to have the sailing events,” Davey said at the time of the announcement.
“By having the competition here, it gives New Bedford an opportunity to expand on their legacy and to showcase their beauty to the world.”
The skeet and trap shooting events were originally planned for Long Island in Boston Harbor, which used to house a homeless shelter. But the new plans set their sights on Billerica, 25 miles away from Boston.
There has been talk of shipping the rowing events out to Worcester or up to Lowell after it was determined that the Charles River did not meet Olympic regulations.
Some towns where popular sports were born, like Holyoke, the birthplace of volleyball and Springfield, the birthplace of basketball, were suggested for those respective events while out-of-state stadiums might host the baseball events and Fenway would host only the finals.
“This was a bait-and-switch,” Chris Dempsey, a co-chairman for No Boston Olympics, told the New York Times. “They’re trying to appeal to a new reality, where they have to win a statewide referendum. The only way to do that is to start to sprinkle these things around.”
Boston 2024 is expected to announce more venues changes for various events in the next few days.