What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Back when they were talking about re-doing Soldier Field, we all knew that they should have placed it way out in the far western suburbs, preferably the northwest. I suggested the site of the old Poplar Creek Music Theater. Big site, easily able to create massive lanes of on/off access to I-90, and a mammoth amount of property within which to put a gigantic tailgating lot. Like this one.

Isn’t that nice?

Have you ever been to Miller Park? Great access, huge tailgating lot, tons of bathrooms, huge concourses. I am not saying that the exit out of a baseball game is instantaneous from Miller Park and have never been to the Arrowhead Stadium complex above. But either are light years ahead of what we have now at Soldier Field. Shame on Chicago. I bet people from other cities laugh at our “game day experience”.

For whatever reason, be it graft, or whatever, the ugly new Soldier Field was kept in the same place it was since the original construction over three quarters of a century ago.

The reason I am talking about this is because starting next football season, things around Soldier Field are going to get…interesting…due to the construction of the Star Wars Museum on the South Lot.

I got a letter from Ted Phillips the other day and here it is.

Dear xxx,

Since the design and location of The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art were unveiled, we have worked with the City of Chicago and the Chicago Park District to ensure your voice was heard and your game day experience was enhanced. As you may have recently heard, we have reached an agreement with the City and Park District to bring added benefits to game days. As of today, here is what we can share:

– There will be no changes during the 2015 season.
– Upon the project’s completion, we will have more parking (estimated 1300
additional) and more tailgating (estimated 200 additional) spaces than currently
exist on the museum campus. The experience will be different, as the south lot will no longer exist, but we have ensured the great tradition of tailgating will continue on the lakefront.
– A new parking garage will be built on the west side of Lake Shore Drive at 18th Street with tailgating spots on the top level.
– The construction timeline is estimated at three years with a projected start in spring of 2016.
– During construction, we have established parking on Northerly Island and additional satellite parking sites to replace the south lot spaces. They will include
Grant Park, south of McCormick Place at 31st Street and the Michael Reese site. These lots will include free shuttles for fans who utilize them on game days. We anticipate the 2016 season will be the first impacted by the project. Details regarding how parking coupons will be allocated to these lots are still being determined.
– We are working with the City and Park District on traffic studies to identify the best ways to bring people on and off the museum campus both during construction and after completion of the project.
– We have new marketing revenue opportunities which will be directly invested into future improvements at Soldier Field to further enhance your game day experience.

While we have secured important fan amenities, there is still work to be done. We have stressed to the City and Park District from the beginning, Bears Season Ticket Holders remain our priority. We understand there are many more questions that will arise throughout this process. As we learn more details as it relates to your experience, we will continue to communicate with you. Bears President and CEO Ted Phillips will be joining Jeff Joniak tonight from 6:30-7:30 PM on WBBM 780 for the Chicago Bears Coaches Show to discuss the Lucas Museum project among other topics on Bears football.

Our Ticket Sales & Service staff is also available for questions at (847) 615-BEAR. We appreciate your patience during this project. Our goal remains to deliver the best fan experience to you.

Thank you and Go Bears!

Chicago Bears Ticket Sales & Service

Oh boy wouldn’t that be great to be tailgating SOUTH of McCormick place and take a shuttle to the game? You might as well tailgate in Kankakee. And Northerly Island? You will have to leave at the end of the third quarter to have any realistic shot of leaving by 6pm on a noon start. Those are just for starters.

Carl and I agree that this will be a complete and total disaster, and that likely the only thing to get done from this list is that they destroy the South Lot.


4 responses to “What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

  1. Carl from Chicago

    Yes this will be an epic disaster. Likely too it will be saddled with lawsuits from the git’ go. I might no longer be on this planet by the time it is all up and done. And it will be awesome to try to leave that new parking facility after a game, likely would take 100 years.

    Probably at this point we just give up on tailgating except opening day when we just pay through the nose and the rest of the time we’d go to Hackney’s or something instead. And then just walk the hell out of there. Or leave at the end of the 3rd quarter as you suggested.

  2. Dan from Madison

    Walking north out of there to Wacker Drive was no big deal at all. Actually somewhat pleasant on a nice warm day. Later in the season no way. It will be an incredible disaster. I can’t even imagine.

  3. A Star Wars “Museum”? Makes no sense to me. Call it a money making Theme Park which is what it will be. Another way of using words to conceal their true intent in order to bypass long standing laws regarding lakefront commercial development. Chicago dems pulling another fast one right in front of everybody. I expect nothing less. Making Boy George their bitch does makes me chuckle.

  4. Having a new stadium off of I-90 in the suburbs would be just as worse. There is always (ALWAYS) construction on the tollways. It starts at Huntley and goes through Elgin all the way to the Kennedy. It’s a nightmare. Thankfully, I don’t take 90 often as I live right off 88 in Dekalb, but even then, there is a ton of construction of 88 on the way to 290.

    It’s this damn state. They can never get their roads properly fixed. Putting a stadium near Rosemont, Cumberland or even by Naperville, is just as worse. The City of Chicago are a bunch of scumbags for trying to put this museum there. It’s a pain in the ass for me to get out of McCormick Place and onto 55 just to get home. The traffic is atrocious as it is now.

    What I do is exit off of 31st, go get something to eat, wait a while and then head home. For game days, I will just part in Bridgeport or Bronzeville (there is plenty of parking there) and walk to the shuttle or take a cab.

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