Friday, April 19, 2024

Stadium Expert Laughs At Soldier Field Dome Idea By Mayor Lightfoot


Mayor Lori Lightfoot has insisted up and down that she has plenty of alternatives to convince the Chicago Bears they should stay at Soldier Field. Her latest idea floated might be her wildest yet. It involves a plan to put a dome over the stadium. It could make the building a year-round venue. The Bears would also get say over additional adjustments to the surrounding property. It sounds grandiose on paper, but would the Bears go for it?

Not a chance. Stadium expert Mark Ganis of Sportscorp has been around processes like this many times in his career. He spoke to Mully & Haugh of 670 The Score about the new development. While he didn’t outright say the words, his response boiled down to Lightfoot being delusional. She is trying to save face in a rapidly slipping out of her control. It will take far more than what she’s offering to sway the Bears from their current course.

“It’s good politics. It’s good theater. It demonstrates that she at least has some people looking at it, not giving it up without a fight. But it hardly moves the needle in the areas that the needle needed to be moved in. This is one of those things where the relationship had soured so much. The landlord-tenant relationship. Which is a difficult one in the best of circumstances. There just wasn’t a lot positive there.

Then the building being 80-100 years old in its bones, second-smallest in the NFL, all the difficulty of getting to the site by the fans. The best thing it had going for it was the visual from the Goodyear blimp, quite frankly. In 2022 and 2030 and beyond, that’s just not good enough.”

It was never just about Soldier Field.

That is the issue being lost on this subject. Yes, the stadium is old, outdated, and small by NFL standards. It is in serious need of refurbishing at the very least. The problems go deeper than that. This is about the fractured relationship between the organization and the Chicago Park District, the property owners. The CPD has rebuffed the Bears on countless issues regarding stadium upgrades for years. Ownership endured it for years because they had no alternatives.

That changed when the Arlington Park property went up for auction. The Bears placed a bid and won. Suddenly the CPD lost all the leverage they once had, and now they stand to lose the most lucrative tenant Soldier Field has ever and probably will ever have. Nothing seems like it will stop the McCaskey family from seeing this process through to the end. The Bears are destined for a new stadium in Arlington Heights. One they will own.

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It’s unfortunate that politics has to end what was such a long partnership.


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This guy
This guy
Jul 8, 2022 3:53 am

And what the Mayor of Chicago doesn’t realize is that nobody cares as long as the McKaskeys own the Bears. Let them leave, they will still be the Bears.

Gator Joe
Jul 7, 2022 1:21 pm

Unfortunate? NO. Fortune favors the bold. Papa would be proud.

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