WEEI>On Demand>>John Fish on the Olympics in Boston 7-8-14

John Fish on the Olympics in Boston 7-8-14

Jul 8, 2014|

Suffolk Construction CEO John Fish discussed his desire to bring the Olympics to Boston.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Our John fish is in charge of what they had the Boston lupica -- you know there are bidding for the 2024. Summer Olympics August 1 two in the US bid. And get the Olympics overall in John's kind of to take a few minutes dryness and the eighteenth he -- John how are you. Well when are you doing good thanks -- you know. I just got to start with this when we talk about this year we get a million -- coming in it was a 9010 against ex. We get calls 9010 against the Olympics I haven't talked to anybody who's dying and have the Olympics in this city I guess I'll ask. Why should we have. You know what he did a wonderful opportunity for us to have a very interesting conversation in the conversation that -- has not have. Happened in this city blocks from the com -- quite some time it really is talking about the vision. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the city of Boston we do we wanna be in twenty dirty which we would -- in 2040. And the Olympics allows us as a community to have that conversation. In to meet it is an apocalyptic but we -- Boston's future risk. In so I'm focusing on along with some of the business people in the people educational field. To discuss that in working with the mayor's office and the governor's office they have a robust conversation. When you -- future company if you win the bidding a construction company. I'd be very comfortable recusing myself on the any public funding that goes involved in the Olympics I would have a problem that whatsoever. To me. There will be mostly private funding for this particular. For the venues that we create in the public's side of the money will come from the transportation side which is not that it worked at my firm gets involved. You know my problem with that is is that's fine my problem that is I heard the private sector argument in Athens there in Vancouver parted London -- mostly proud that turned out not to be the case. A much -- believe that here in Boston just -- -- too many times in the past. You go to just when you talk about that and have read articles that people report that as well to London was an enormously successful Olympics I think it could just came back with a -- -- 82% of the people London. Felt that he's been transformed their economy into the future of the city of London and swimming my -- -- I think we take a look at that. The fact the SP consult. But you also take a look at what's happening in the United States of America not in Montreal to the United States of America. You take a look what happened really -- -- laugh about it and formally put us into a phenomenal conference and he take it live live Atlanta and what happened at the University of Georgia and how that is transform the to the residential program out there in the importantly and you take a look at Salt Lake City would happen here you take a look at. Which happened in Los Angeles. And how that impacts the coliseum in the whole downtown area of Los Angeles USC UCLA. So my -- is we take -- -- in history you look at some the impact of these Olympics that I had in the United States of America. They have been transformed those particular areas and they've been a 100% no but they've been -- latest on legacy. Economic drivers absolutely. And Mike -- is in the 21 century using technology and innovation. Weekend so -- could do it minister model work on the -- send this to ensure successful welcome. John how do you. Out of the argument by -- say what are you going to do they velodrome after the Olympics are an aquatic center or. Any other thing you have to build it may seem kind of needless to the city of Boston. One of the principles guiding principles we have this is what else and so nothing that would be constructed. We'd be not have a legacy -- subsequent Olympics themselves that's the principle that we'd actually enforce. Secondly I think we are fortunate to have over a hundred colleges and universities in our backyard currently today that. Some of them has uses system these particular facility. In this sense is right now we are working with them not on their current plans today but what is the long term strategic plans these institutions. It what are the requirements in out of these requirements -- to get to the Olympics. Well let me be very clear what the confusing part of this conversation is -- it. It's not a boat. The Olympics to but we hear the future of our city in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Wants to be in should be. In twenty to 25 to thirty years from now how did -- Olympics in that equation in the Olympics to this due diligence -- doing right now. Does not apply we should be chasing them I'd be the first one to agree we shouldn't force the conversation at all. I've said that to variety different people appear it's -- some reason some people think that what we're doing is we're designing. -- venue for the Olympics and not about the future of the city Boston. Well I think two things from me first of all I think comparing the class of the Boston doesn't work Boston's pilots on that the hotels are full that the airports -- find the city's booming the way I look at. Number two is in this city John you know this city very well you've been here your whole life. Did to believe that it's gonna be ten years of of good times -- no political nightmares no traffic disasters. I just look at it's going to be crazy and this entanglement. You know I appreciate -- playing in -- and in an item and exactly so the point you're trying to make the leadership question. When you say the city's -- and hotels -- awful. We know we will win five years ago we will be four years ago we had a Great Recession. When will we jumped ahead in construction despite his create 35% unemployment I pick in the and the -- we animal 16% unemployment. It was a tough tough go. In in my sense is it's a high a couple of people of Massachusetts as well to. In this conversation to me is not a but we we have today we are we going to be in the future and it's really -- transportation conversation. How do we improve the quality by transportation process. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to unlock the value real estate in areas that we have been unable one walk in the in the in the past. For an example 128. People have been very challenging time locating themselves outside 128. To work in the city of Boston. How do we as a -- well. Create a better transportation system infrastructure system outside of 128. This issue regarding Olympics will sponsor that conversation to me the importance of operating real person -- To stop the design in strategy of high speed realtors Springfield. In creating an opportunity for the people of those particular regions to commute both. East to west and north to sell the Kabul and we we would be in 20302040. With respect to compensation. -- appreciate you you saying that the of this Olympic venture would would build up things that Boston in the Boston area in Massachusetts really need. But what's something that. If you go into this and you say you know what this is going to be a really really challenges thing as small example of that is. You know I've heard the crew for instance he -- everyone would say you -- crew -- here in the Charles River. Are you can't do with bridges OK so you would have to go somewhere else. Was the one thing and honestly which you say you know what this would be a very very challenging undertaking to have the Olympics here. When she called record crucial why would you want crew wantonly and sigma. Why wouldn't we want a great well I that's just as a quick thing just because I mean I guess this is. This is just be -- when I think of Olympics in Boston and I think crew I think of doing it where they have these competitions right here. But the that this is not a -- Olympics this is the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Olympics that's what's important part of this conversation. And the same thing by upgrading the transportation and central western Massachusetts what does that have to do with the Olympics it has everything in the world to -- but the Olympics. This conversation and I really appreciate you coming from. It's not a boat the Olympics it's a boat with this city with a com wolf wants to be in the future and how does -- Olympics. Get into that equation. That's -- import. -- beat it up so I know I I can appreciate so I guess I would reiterate my question which is. What what is the one thing that you say you know what this is going to be very very challenging to do our guest John by my guests of the building a 100000 seat stadium something to write about her yeah. I think you first off the -- it's not 80000 square keep stadium. 60000 and it might even get a lead and small what's happened is is I think people in the Olympic movement understand. That the Olympics over extra hour period of time has been challenging in some respects. And what they're doing and -- doing everything they possibly can to make these more practice. More appealing. More of an economic driver for cities like Boston did attain this -- this concept. In to me I think this that we would be a wonderful opportunity to have this conversation. Not forced the conversation. Defeat in Boston is the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The right environment to host 20/20 fourth Olympic and paralympic games. I'm sure -- of the -- Shaughnessy column in the globe this weekend John one quote he has and hear from me Boston business tycoon a local lifer he writes who has doubled all the big shots on the business. The political scene is quote the Olympics in Boston would probably finish the city off for good. He said come your reaction. You know hinted -- dissent is I don't know do you ensure honesty I have enormous respect for Monday writes wonderful column in the gold. My expenses is that IEP. He -- about my knowledge he never asked one question of both these Olympics. He's never sat down with us -- spoke to media -- what do we didn't want to the last nine months and what does the conversation than senator ground. He hasn't talked with how we're trying to -- in the vision of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts contend with a host the Olympics. And I'll -- I did some of the fact that things are wrong pin and I think specifically London. I'm on all wanted to do is pick up the phone he knows Sebastien co -- -- -- olympiad -- media will be and he he can pick up on participate national over in London. And -- bashed in -- How successful. Olympic Games were in how transformed they have become. In the in the in in the clamor around London. So to me he. I think we need to have this conversation I appreciate we -- coming from right now I would -- wondered myself I played that in met with -- -- -- I met with the people. I know the various different organize it looked at went to Barcelona. I've seen even in Barcelona some some twenty some odd years later the impact that the Olympics has had on that particular region. Take a look at Salt Lake City take a look at. The Los Angeles. Take a look what's -- -- take a look at an Indian and Lake Placid the miracle on -- These things. It is the typical -- as strong story be told it I think very candidly. This gives us an opportunity to have that -- it doesn't mean felt most by any stretch. We're committed in the important we can withdraw our our level of interest except the known -- Milwaukee watched. It it is fair to say go -- and speak candidly speak and we also it is fair to say that you could potentially a Suffolk construction can make hundreds of millions of dollars. If you land a striving that is that is a fact. He as they -- in the papers before. I spend 30% of my time to 45% of my time. Involved in the community and -- committee I chair the chamber and Paul in the Federal Reserve involved in Boston College I'm involved on Friday to close things -- woman's hospital. I'd pick up with a twenty IQ track record of demonstrating my commitment. Both time -- And I judge on the hybrid debt that's that's that's not I -- I don't disagree that -- Let let me finish please let me finish -- we come from honestly do it it's all about credibility. In in in make sense right now is I'm taking my time in my resources. Along with our committee. To look at this and objectively. -- in I think people would jump into the two to the conclusion. That we definitely could be hosting the Olympics we -- if it's not right for the city at the people in the mayor did not want this it's it's it's a nonstarter -- I don't have an issue with that. But to me. I think we have an opportunity here to think bold leap to think differently and think about the next generation. It is none of this what's gonna Guam with the Olympics is gonna impact at the end of the day people just it's all booked a bloody right how is gonna -- impeccable and who's going. -- here's here's here's here's my point oh and I appreciate your answer my points and -- -- twice and you due running highly profitable highly. Well no construction company is going to be in the picture trying to hear it in the main spokesman efforts so far destroyed the globe. Iran they have seen other spots for the Olympics in 2024 so if everything works out in Boston gets it. -- construction companies stand potentially to make a nice sum of money that happens. -- -- -- -- -- -- let me let me answer the question -- -- did it again it is not -- Spanish inquisition -- the issue -- go to. I'm in the construction business is it -- opportunity -- this they're privately funded not publicly funded. We would have interest and those particular project. He did did that the black went into that is that that's that's my livelihood. But dissent is at the end of the day you people said to me I want to look at the construction to recuse himself as relates this work. I'd seriously consider that to be honest we take it let me be blunt here this is not a boat Suffolk construction. It's a book the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the city Boston in the future of the next generation and how quickly if the seeds for future property economic development. In the commonwealth ministers. Guy just to sort of you know it's very early in the process -- -- -- should -- sort of win the US did -- and then long shot. What do you think the odds to be cute I mean are we talking about something -- waste your time and one and 100 chancellors are legitimate chance of Boston actually getting Olympics in 2000. I feel very strongly. If the city of Boston. Wants to win. The united stance with the committee's designation we can do that there is no doubt in my mind about that I wouldn't be wasting my time taken -- It that way. Secondly I think on the international skill the opportunity. The Boston Massachusetts. To present its credentials in a global basis. On that in the AA at a horizon. I think he's a wonderful wonderful opportunity. For the city and to me I think -- reverberate -- -- if in fact. That is appropriate for a city. How much would would vote the bill be giddy destiny were what's the bill for the Summer Olympics in Boston 2024 told we. Haven't we we haven't finalized at the numbers right now could only have this conversation for the past -- I would say six months. You know this is that this is -- fortified due process that you go through. Analytically in in my senses -- our goal is when you take this you break it down the street from -- wanted to transportation pocket. And all the transportation work goes -- to be very clear -- Would only be work that's already planned strategically for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts it wouldn't be any other. Transportation work -- which plant for. Second off than you could what is called the so called budget the operating budget which is basically wash its advertising it's it's the sponsorships. It's ticket sales period things like that. That debt but console war and the last thing is that physical plant himself. In the Olympic Committee is it today in the IOC is very interest in temporary venues as well to that gives us a wonderful opportunity. It was studying those particular areas but to make sure for example on the Olympic village. That is up in the can be used very properly for bill privately would be very clear about that and then converted to workforce housing. Post Olympics. Or student dormitory that is post Olympics it would be -- with three different opportunities for that and that's a major piece of this particular -- possible. The stadium itself is true potential uses for potential stadium you need 60000 put seat stadium. Thirty the contemporary the rings the top can come off the design those the past. That leaves you with 30000 seat stadium when you -- when -- completed in our opportunities felt if for that. Velodrome -- promise that some people want to become -- bites -- apple world maybe they might want apartment with one of these college universities LP to establish that -- So there's various different things we've been in conversation with over the past six months nothing cast in stone. With -- two with three or four options for each particular venue. And we wanna exercise as much as we possibly can but I -- be very very clear. If this planning process proves not to make sense there is no need for us to carry the conversation on any longer once we determine that. I feel that this is gonna bring us together in a collaborative way to be thinking about division of 2030 in the couple semesters at. All right Joseph thanks -- -- the time appreciated -- art but thank you. Shot if she's in charge of the 2024. Summer Olympic Committee embossed. Odd couple phone calls all the talk about that that's fine feel free to do with Texas and Texas have waited 617 -- that. 793 cents Augusta got the final legal talk but we get back -- that's rookies do you want the Olympics in Boston in 2024 trying to answer that more.

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