Super Bowl 2022 shows Los Angeles is ‘very much back’: Mayor Eric Garcetti

When the Los Angeles Rams take on the Cincinnati Bengals at SoFi Stadium in Super Bowl LVI, it will mark the LA market’s return to NFL prominence. The region has not hosted the big event since 1993.

But for LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, the spectacle in Inglewood, Calif., Signals the start of a busy and lucrative pipeline of sporting events for the city. From the MLB All Star Game at Dodger Stadium this summer, to the College Football National Championship game in 2023 and the 2028 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games, Garcetti said the events will showcase why LA can “lay claim to being one of the greatest, if not greatest sports cities in the world. “

“It shows that LA is very much back but also that we do things that are next level,” Garcetti said. “It’s pushing the idea of ​​a stadium, the enjoyment of sports forward in a way that also benefits the people who live here too. And that’s been a really important part of the story. ”

Sunday’s Super Bowl alone is expected to inject at least half a billion dollars directly into the region’s economy, according to Garcetti. A report by economic research firm Micronomics estimates $ 22 million will be collected in tax revenue, with 2,200 to 4,700 new jobs created as a result.

That windfall brings a much needed economic jolt to a city still reeling from the pandemic. Los Angeles County lost more than 770,000 jobs in the first two months of the pandemic, with its economic engine, the services sector, all but shut down. While 70% of those jobs have been recovered, according to data from the state’s Employee Development Department, the region’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remains well above the national rate, at 8.4%.

“[The] hospitality industry is a core industry. Whether it’s tourists coming, or whether it’s events like [the Super Bowl] or the Oscars, Grammys, it’s a key part of our economy. While we go into a usually a deeper hole, when there’s economic downturns, we also accelerate out of them faster than anybody else, ”Garcetti said. “We are not just benefiting from events like [the Super Bowl]I think we’ve been very strategic about making sure we spread out between neighborhoods and industries, what this prosperity looks like. ”

Feb 9, 2022;  Inglewood, CA, USA;  An aerial view of SoFi Stadium, the site of Super Bowl LVI between the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams.  Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Feb 9, 2022; Inglewood, CA, USA; An aerial view of SoFi Stadium, the site of Super Bowl LVI between the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

That prosperity has not necessarily spread evenly to many residents in the city of Inglewood yet, where SoFi stadium stands. While the venue has set records for the most expensive stadium built, with a price tag of roughly $ 5.5 billion, the community just outside of it saw a poverty rate of more than 16%, according to US Census data. Residents have raised concerns about increased traffic and rising property prices that have come along with the buildout.

“The story really of the past 30 years was disinvestment in South Los Angeles and Inglewood. I’d much rather have investment and try to tackle how we can make sure that’s equitable than not having any investment at all, ”Garcetti said.

The investments have followed, with new office builds and retail stores being built out near SoFi stadium. Right near the venue, Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer is building out a $ 1.2 billion Intuit Dome, that will be the future home for the team. Last year, Alphabet’s (GOOG) YouTube agreed to a 10-year naming rights deal with Rams owner Stan Kroenke’s development group, to build a 6,000-seat entertainment arena named YouTube Theater.

The 2028 LA Summer Olympics and Paralympics have led to a construction blitz around Los Angeles, especially on transportation. Garcetti has laid out a Twenty-eight by ’28 initiative, aimed at completing 28 transit projects by the Olympic Games. Garcetti said the city plans to roll out 15 rail lines, by the time athletes and spectators arrive in 2028.

“We are very excited in the coming year to open up public transportation to go straight down almost to the stadium, at LAX, we are spending $ 16 billion to welcome the world and our country to come to LA in the future,” Garcetti said . “Twenty-seven percent of those [construction jobs] are local construction jobs. A percentage almost unheard of coming from the local folks that we’ve trained in the crafts. These are good middle-class jobs for folks who live in Inglewood to purchase a home to be able to stay in their neighborhood. ”

Akiko Fujita is an anchor and reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @AkikoFujita

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