Feb 26, 2024

By Bob Komsic

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A just released city of Toronto staff projects it will cost nearly $80-million more to host the 20026 soccer tournament.



The increase is tied to the additional cost of a sixth group stage match — instead of five, along with an evaluation of vendor quotes, safety and security and ”inflationary uncertainty.”

Budget Chief Shelley Carroll defends the higher cost, saying it’s ”manageable” and that the economic return will be much more valuable in job and economic growth.

The province recently announced its commitment to giving the city up to $97-million, as long as Ottawa matches the contribution, leaving city hall responsible for close to $190-million.

Mayor Olivia Chow says she’s confident the city will find ways to offset some of that money.

She’s open to increasing the hotel tax which rose by 2% last year before she became mayor.

”We’ll do what we can to bring in other sources of revenue, whether it’s through sponsorships, through commercial rights, private donations.”

The staff report goes before the city’s executive committee Thursday and then city council March 20.

Vancouver is the other Canadian city set to host matches, while cities in the U.S. and Mexico will do the same.

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