Thursday, July 11, 2024

Kevin Warren Turned Down A Drastic Funding Measure For Bears’ New Stadium

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The Chicago Bears believe they have around 72% of the necessary funding to finance a new stadium on the lakefront. Team president Kevin Warren and his people hope to get the remaining 28% from a collaborative effort with the state of Illinois. However, Governor J.B. Pritzker and the sitting state government have rebuffed early attempts by the organization to discuss such things. They don’t view a new stadium as anywhere close to a pressing issue, especially with economic challenges elsewhere.

This leads to obvious questions about how the Bears will raise the money if the state doesn’t help. One option they could look into is offering a minor stake in ownership of the franchise. The Ricketts family did this with the Chicago Cubs back in 2015, allowing Andrew T. Berlin to purchase upwards of 20% of the team. They would then use that money to help finance renovations to Wrigley Field. Warren made it clear to Fox 32 that such an avenue is not and probably never will be on the table for the Bears.

That’s something that we have not talked about. That’s something that is not on the table at this point in time,” Warren said when asked about the Bears selling minority ownership in the team. “It’s just not, and I don’t ever visualize that becoming a part of the discussion. We don’t think it’s necessary to do.

“Never say never. But that is not something that we would ever focus on.”

Kevin Warren believes the process has only begun.

Part of the issue at present is it’s an election season. Democrats and Republicans are gearing up for what should be a high-stakes battle for seats in government at both the state and federal levels. Negotiating a new stadium deal in the midst of that is not something anybody wants. This is why the Illinois legislature adjourned without even discussing the idea. The Bears will have to wait for their next opportunity. Warren made it clear he’s not been surprised by any of this. Getting a stadium done is never a smooth process. He expected roadblocks.

This is why the Bears hired him. Kevin Warren has done this before. He fought the same battles in Minnesota when the Vikings wanted to build U.S. Bank Stadium. There were plenty of headaches, but eventually, they got the job done without going over budget. Warren is confident he can do the same. He stated his goal is to start the construction of the stadium by next year and complete it by 2028. That sounds ambitious. Still, he has more knowledge of this stuff than anybody else. If he thinks it’s doable, then we’ll have to watch.

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7 COMMENTS

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Dr. Steven Sallie
Dr. Steven Sallie
Jun 13, 2024 4:29 pm

It’s a turndown day.

BearCub30
Jun 13, 2024 4:00 pm

I do like Warren but it’s very interesting to see people starting to turn on him. My biggest gripe is he has now thrown out these hard dates to start and finish but has yet to meet the dates he previously stated of when we would have a final decision on where the stadium is gonna be built. That was supposed to happen 8+ months ago?! I think he is getting played by Illinois politics that he’s never seen before. Different world in Chi town Warren. Better get ready to get dirty if you’re gonna try to play in the… Read more »

ChazzHammer
ChazzHammer
Jun 13, 2024 3:14 pm

Worst hire the Bears made was bringing in Kevin Warren. The guy cares more about being the King of Chicago by delivering a below average stadium at the lakefront with no fan experience.
He’s not looking out for the Chicsgo Bears or the fans best interest. He’s just looking out for himself and his standing in the politically corrupt city of Chicago.
I really hope the Bears ownership behind the scenes realize KW is a freaking clown and not out for the best interest of the Bears and their fans.

Bubba Ho-Tep
Bubba Ho-Tep
Jun 13, 2024 10:17 am

Give up the old poor team Lakefront ways already. Staying there only puts you in further bondage to the city of Chicago, who has wonderful mayors like Lori Lightfoot. Is that what you want to tie yourself to? Build in Arlington Heights and you can make Billions over and over, with hotels, museums, shopping areas, anything at all you want to develop. Keep all of that for yourself. Or, limit your space down to almost nothing and share revenue with questionable at best city government. Being progressive and forward thinking actually means growing and becoming great. This is for all… Read more »

bluridge
bluridge
Jun 13, 2024 8:03 am

Chitcongo gonna tax the sheet out of locals. Pay up sukkas so the rest of us can enjoy the new Uber stadium on your dime. I love Chitcongo. Never spend your own money when you can spend somebody else’s.

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