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If Salt Lake City is selected to host the 2002 Winter Games, organizers plan to spend more than double the amount taxpayers invested in sports facilities to ready them for the Olympics and to build a huge new ice arena.

Most of the money to pay for those improvements, as well as millions more for ceremony locations, athlete housing, media workspace and administrative offices, is supposed to come from projected Olympic revenues.But taxpayers may be asked to come up with as much as another $59 million to help pay for it all - on top of the $59 million they're already investing in the Utah Winter Sports Park and other Olympic facilities.

The total price tag for fixing up facilities and building new ones is $353.8 million, an amount that includes the $99 million the Salt Lake Olympic Bid Committee agreed to pay for the state's facilities.

The money set aside to improve those facilities would pay for installing temporary judging, media and spectator seating as well as some permanent improvements, including covering the speed-skating oval.

The privately funded bid committee's share of the overall price tag for improvements is $294.8 million, a sizable portion of the estimated $798 million budget for hosting the Winter Games.

The Winter Games budget itself would be funded out of the revenues raised, especially from the sale of television broadcast rights and corporate sponsorships.

It's up to the University of Utah and other entities that participate in putting on the Olympics to figure out how to fund the remaining $59 million. Besides taxpayers, sources could include private contributions and user fees.

No one has calculated the actual additional cost to taxpayers, and they probably won't try until after June 1995, when the International Olympic Committee names the site of the 2002 Winter Games.

Bid documents show the U. will have to come up with $49 million for its share of building an Olympic Village to house 4,000 athletes and expanding Rice Stadium for opening and closing ceremonies.

The Olympic Village would be turned into needed dorm space and the additional seating at Rice Stadium would improve the U.'s standing in collegiate football.

If the U. decides to help build what's being called the Salt Lake Ice Arena, an 8,000-seat stadium that would be used for ice hockey and short-track, speed-skating events, it would cost the campus another $7 million.

The U. would like to convert the ice arena after the Olympics into an indoor practice field for football and baseball, as well as intramural sports, according to Administrative Services Vice President Thomas Nycum.

Nycum said the U. is counting on contributions to help with the $56 million tab for the three Olympic-related projects but said taxpayers will have to help, too.

How much money will need to be appropriated from state coffers for the projects "really hasn't been determined. But we're committed to make it happen," he said of the projects.

Area residents may not welcome the ice arena. Several years ago, they successfully blocked a bid committee plan to build a speed-skating oval near the U. The oval is now under construction in Kearns.

"With the opening (and closing) ceremonies, and the athletes here, we may already have enough. I'm not sure we actually need to have events taking place on the edge of a residential area," said J. David Cook, a member of the East Central Community Council.

Cook said he and his neighbors worry about the amount of traffic an Olympic event would generate through the area, the same concern many had about locating the speed-skating oval there.

Originally, the bid committee planned only a small ice rink for the Salt Lake area. But after the recent demolition of the Salt Palace drum, a much larger ice arena was needed, bid officials said.

Bid committee president Tom Welch said the location of the only new facility that will be built by Olympic organizers is not set in stone, even though it is shown at the U. in the bid documents submitted last month to the IOC.

"We're going to put it in an area of the community that wants it. We're not going to force it on anyone," Welch said. He said there are at least two other options for locating the ice arena.

One would be building it elsewhere in Salt Lake City and, after the Winter Games, turning it into a community recreational facility. The other is building the arena on the west side of the valley, then selling or leasing it to a professional hockey team that's been proposed for that area.

Besides the Olympic Village, the Rice Stadium expansion and the Salt Lake Ice Arena, the bid committee also wants someone to match the $3 million it plans to contribute toward a practice-only ice rink.

The likely location for the ice rink is Provo, where officials have expressed disappointment at not being chosen as an Olympic event site by the bid committee.

Provo leaders have promised to ask the Legislature for money for an ice rink and to match what they get. Ogden's ice rink, built with local matching funds and $3.25 million in state money, is the site of the women's ice hockey competition.

Welch said the money that the U. and other entities will be asked to contribute toward facilities represents "a bringing together of interests to maximize Olympic dollars."



Cost of venues



1 Cottonwood Heights ice $0 $1,000,000


2 Deer Valley/Park City 0 18,000,000


3 Delta Center 0 4,000,000



4 Mountain Dell Park 300,000 17,000,000


5 Ogden/Weber Ice Arena 3,250,000 1,000,000


(practice arena)

6 Oquirrh Park Oval 4,700,000 29,000,000


7 Salt Lake Ice Arena (propsed) 100,000 22,000,000



8 Snow Basin 0 10,000,000


9 Winter Sports Park 50,500,000 22,000,000



Evaluators are here

Backers of Salt Lake City's bid for the 2002 Winter Games will have a chance to show off the proposed Olympic venues to the International Olympic Committee Evaluation Committee this week.

Salt Lake is the first stop for the newly formed panel of experts, which is scheduled to visit all nine cities competing for the 2002 Winter Games by mid-November.

The 15 commission members, which include IOC members, winter sport organization officials, athletes, former Winter Games organizers and environmental and financial specialists, are expected to arrive Sunday.

Before leaving Wednesday, they will be shown all of the state's Olympic facilities, including the Utah Winter Sports Park at Bear Hollow near Park City, where a bobsled and luge run is under construction.

The commission's findings will be used by the IOC in January to narrow the list of candidates to four cities. Next June, six months after this first-ever elimination round, the IOC will select the site of the 2002 Winter Games.

The other cities bidding are Quebec, Canada; Jaca, Spain; Ostersund, Sweden; Sion, Switzerland; Graz, Austria; Tarvisio, Italy; Poprad-Tatry, Slovakia; and Sochi, Russia.