Thursday, April 30, 2009
On the other hand, violence is a huge factor. According to the video more then 2,000 people were murdered in Rio last year (which averages to nearly 38 a week. Yikes!).
We couldn't post the video, but here is the link if you want to check it out.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
"The 2014 World Cup is an important part of Rio de Janeiro's bid," Rio de Janeiro state governor Sergio Cabral told the IOC members on Wednesday. "The improvements in accommodation, security and transportation will be useful for both events."While these points are valid, Governor Cabral is forgetting another factor: Ego. Let's not forget that the world of international sports is driven by some huge personalities. Would the Olympic movement really want to come to Rio/Brazil two years after arguably the second largest international sporting event, the World Cup?
There is precedent for the World Cup to follow the Olympics, but not vice versa (or as far as we could tell). It's impossible to know how IOC officials feel about this, but we imagine it's something that they do consider.
Hi There,For those of you who don't know, the Peregrine Falcon is Chicago's official bird. For more information about the bird you can check out Stephanie's blog or this article.
I work with a program that monitors the Peregrine Falcon population here in Chicago. Two years ago, a pair of peregrines new to the Chicago region tried to nest on the Field Museum, but they were unsuccessful. They returned the following year and, after laying a few eggs in a precarious location on the museum, tried to set up shop at a construction site in the south loop. That nest failed as well.
The pair is back this year and we have been tracking them since early March. However, we haven't been able to determine where or IF they have chosen a new nesting site. At this point in the season, this pair will have likely laid eggs and they should be hatching in the next couple of weeks. We would like to find them in order to put leg bands on the chicks and record the identities of the adults.
Peregrines nest on cliff ledges, so our wild urban population makes fine use of the ledges on Chicago's taller buildings as nesting sites. Residents of those buildings may see the adults frequently and we would love to hear about those sightings. Perhaps your readers may be of some assistance. If you would consider posting a picture of a peregrine on your blog and mention my email address (email@example.com), that would give people an easy place to report those sightings. I have been seeing them most frequently in the area of 14th and Wabash.
I have attached a picture I took last year of the museum's adult male, which should provide ample information regarding physical characteristics.
Thank you for your consideration!
Collections Assistant, Insect Division
Secretary, Scholarship Committee
Member, Chicago Peregrine Program
The Field Museum
1400 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605-2496
Keep your eyes peeled to the sky and hopefully we can help figure out where the Falcons are nesting!
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Last year we got word of Columbia College's proposed Media Production Center at the corner of State and 16th. The construction is officially underway:
The official groundbreaking is tentatively scheduled for early 2009, possibly in February if weather permits, Micki Leventhal, director of Media Relations, said. The building is slated to be finished by spring 2010.The building will provide some new facilities for the school and their students:
The Film, Television and Interactive Arts and Media departments will all be working together in the new space. The building will include two sound stages and a motion capture studio.Here is a picture of the construction progress from a High rise in the South Loop:
(Hat Tip for the picture: Ryan L)
(Image from MICKI LEVENTHAL)
For more information on the building check on the article at the Sun-Times website.
"I don't smoke, so I love the smoke-free building," said Benz, a professional filmmaker and student at Columbia College.
"I've gotten used to going to places that don't smell like smoke. The loft I lived in before this really smelled bad, cigar and what have you," Benz said. "What I like most about AMLI 900 is that it smells fresh and clean. There are no weird odors."
(Image: Brian Jackson / Sun-Times)
Monday, April 27, 2009
The committee has already been to Chicago and Tokyo and from the sounds of it, both cities did relatively well. It's hard to get a good read on how successful the presentations were, so the thinking is that as long as there is no major problem or gaffe, then they will be considered a success. If something bad happens on the visit we would most definitely hear about it.
With that said, we will be scouring the internets monitoring how Rio's evaluation goes over the next week. Our guess is that the committee will use words like 'dynamic' and 'vision' to praise Rio's bid, but at the end of the day, we won't really get a good read on how Rio really stacks up.
Regardless, we will be watching...
Most everybody loves South Loop greasy spoon Howie's — but do you love it enough to make it your legally binding very own? Because it's for sale — drop a scant $105,000 and the quick-service 50 seater (and, presumably, as much grape soda and cheese fries as you're interested in consuming) is all yours through 2014, when the lease is up for renegotiation.If there are no buyers, will Howie's close? We sure hope not!
(Hat Tip: Karen)
Saturday, April 25, 2009
One of the improvements we noticed was a blank sign close to the corner of Michigan and Roosevelt (on the east of the street):
Although we don't know what this will be used for our guess is that it will highlight some of the historic areas in the neighborhood (ie - the historic motor row buildings along Michigan Avenue). Has anyone heard what this sign will be used for or when it will be used?
Friday, April 24, 2009
South West Loop - Part 2
For more info on Part 1 of this area click here.
1) South Branch Bridges
In our opinion these projects are no brainers. By adding bridges at Polk, Taylor and 16th street (in order from north to south) it will better connect the "South West Loop" to the rest of the city grid. This in turn will help the area with traffic flow and make the greater Printers Row area easier to access.
2) Bicycle Lanes & Markings
This is a minor addition and probably relatively inexpensive. So, there is not much argument coming from us. If it happens great, if not no big deal.
3) Clinton Subway (Station at Roosevelt)
Although this is debatable, we're not sure a Clinton Subway line is the best use of public transportation funds. We realize that it would connect to the main proposed multi-billion dollar "West Loop Transportation Center" but won't the circle line also connect everything? In a perfect world the city could afford both the Circle Line and Clinton Subway line, but we truly hope that the Circle Line is the priority. It seems easier to implement and would be better for the greater region. We would love to hear your thoughts on this one...
4) South Branch Riverfront
As we stated in part 1 of this segment, we love this idea. However, it shouldn't be a priority. There are a ton of other projects and things the city needs to focus on (transportation, schools, etc.). Although it would be great to have additional riverfront paths for recreational purposes we don't think it's necessary.
What do you think about these proposed additions? Which ones do you think should get the green light?
The Olympic bid (which is set to be decided upon in October) proves to be the wild card again. If Chicago is awarded the games, we expect a lot of these projects to get fast tracked and hopefully receive a larger share of federal funds.
The Tribune has some "interactive" maps here. However, these are only a couple of the major parts of the overall Central Area Action Plan. Like we said earlier, we're going to focus on some of the projects that specifically touch the South Loop. Stay tuned, we hope to post something later today.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
The first is a post about Marquee (1464 S. Michigan Ave. - pictured to the right) rolling out rental options for some of the remaining units that haven't sold yet. We've heard about similar approaches in the neighborhood given the difficult real estate market.
Also of interest is that 1555 S. Wabash looks to be finally closing on some of their units:
The building has obtained certificates of occupancy for its first three residential floors and should be ready to "rock and roll" (which I interpret as "start closing units") around the first week of May.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
This South Loop club-lounge combo with so-called "Africa meets James Bond" decor debuts in the former Chicago Legends space in late May.The name of the club doesn't really spark to us, but we will give it the benefit of the doubt and reserve our judgment until it opens and we can check it out.
Expect to find two distinct spaces with separate entrances. On one half, you'll find a DJ-driven dance club with a stage and sound system ready to host local and national music acts. On the other half, The Coup d'etat lounge will offer a sophisticated space for cocktail-sipping on Tuesdays and Wednesdays (when the club half is closed) and VIP treatment throughout the weekend. And both smokers and non-smokers will appreciate this: A separate outdoor smoking patio that eliminates the in-out hassle as well as the requisite cloud of smoke near the entrance.
(Hat Tip: TD)
(image from: theshrinechicago.com)
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
The South Loop interestingly doesn't have a Jewish Synagogue in the neighborhood (at least we're not familiar with one). There are a lot of other religious institutions in the neighborhood (Soka Gakkai, Old St. Mary's Church, True Rock Ministry and the planed Church of Scientology to name a few). For Jewish residents the closest synagogue we found was the Chicago Loop Synagogue which is located at 16 South Clark. Technically it's not considered in the Sloop, but still pretty close.
However, even if there isn't a place for Jewish neighbors to practice their religion at least they have some great restaurants and cultural activities that can keep them connected to their faith. As we mentioned above, Eleven City Dinner serves many Jewish staples like potato latkes, matzo ball soup and our personal favorite the traditional corned beef sandwich.
Arguably the most famous Jewish deli in the city (maybe even the region) is Manny's Deli which is located in the Sloop at 1141 S. Jefferson. If you haven't been, we highly recommend you check it out. Not to beat a dead horse, but we highly recommend the Corned Beef! The deli has had it's share of celebrities and politicians hit up the spot (most recently Barack Obama).
Finally, if you want real Jewish culture (although in our opinion the food is a big part of the culture) then you can go over to the recently renovated Spertus Museum at 610 S. Michigan. We haven't been yet, but have been intrigued by some of the lectures and plan to check some out eventually.
So the moral of the story is that you don't have to fret if you're a Jew in the Sloop, there are ways to engage with your Jewish identity. Best of all you don't have to go to services on Saturday morning...
Besides the headliners, some of the other big names are:
Lou Reed, Ben Harper, Thievery Corporation, Snoop Dogg, Rise Against, Andrew Bird, TV on the Radio, Vampire Weekend, the Decemberists, Neko Case. STS9 (Sound Tribe Sector 9), Animal Collective, Band of Horses, Of Montreal, Arctic Monkeys, Coheed and Cambria, Ben Folds and Fleet Foxes.Personally we're super pumped to see the one and only Snoop D,O, double G:
Over the course of the next couple months we will be looking at some of the groups set to rock Lolla, so stay tuned for that.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Well those words were uttered again at the end of the IOC's visit to Tokyo. Our guess is that similar words will be mentioned after Rio's and Madrid's bid as well. It's hard to read to much into these press conferences, but it's clear Chicago and Tokyo survived their IOC evaluations.
The IOC Evaluation Commission members are on to Rio April 29-May 2 and Madrid May 5-8 to inspect their cities' bids. We will see if they survive...
Saturday, April 18, 2009
As soon as the doors opened, Buddy Guy’s Legends quickly drew a celebrity crowd with Guy’s friends eager to get on stage. Special guests have included Stevie Ray Vaughn, the Stones, Eric Clapton, David Bowie and B.B. King. The Legends stage has also been a launching pad for up-and-coming talent like Derek Trucks (the Allman Brothers), who first played at the club when he was 13. Guy has said time and again that he owns his club to keep that burgeoning talent coming in, vowing to keep the blues alive and strong.In honor of the anniversary, the club will have drink specials and giveaways during the month of June. We also wanted share that the official 20th anniversary party will be held on Tuesday, June 16th. We're not sure about the details, but if you can somehow go, it should be fun!
The other thing we recently found out is that people who live in the 60605 zip code don't have to pay cover Sunday through Thursday (excluding special events on those days). Simply show up with a drivers license, ID or bill with the 60605 code and you can enjoy a good time and some great music.
In case you don't know about Buddy, here is an old classic:
Thursday, April 16, 2009
The post mostly goes into the architectural conservation of some of the buildings since they were designed by world renowned architect, Walter Gropius. Of particular interest to us is the quote about the buildings being "fast tracked" and demolished prior to October:
Qualification submittals are due Thursday, April 23, according to the PBC's (Public Building Commission) Web site. Peters (president of Illinois Landmarks) said he expected the PBC to launch a request for proposals process soon afterwards in order to "fast track" demolition before October, when the IOC is scheduled to select one of four cities to host the 2016 Games.This Peters guy is obviously not a supporter of the demolition, so we're not sure how much stock to put in his prediction of demolition starting prior to October. Regardless, food for thought.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
South West Loop - Part 1
This area is bound by Congress Pkwy on the north, 16th street on the south, the Chicago River on the east and the Dan Ryan Expressway on the west. This area has gone through some drastic changes and continues to evolve. Although there isn't much residential living in this small area, it has developed as a major center for 'big box' retailers such as Best Buy, Whole Foods, Home Depot, World Market, Bed Bath & Beyond, and so on.
These stores are in a good position to serve various neighborhoods south of the downtown core. Some of the neighborhoods this area serves are Printer's Row, South Loop, Near South Side, Pilsen, Chinatown, Little Italy, West Loop, University Village and the UIC Campus.
The plan calls for two 'signature streets' at Congress and Roosevelt:
Two major issues we see with this. First, the old post office is a behemoth. Many, many, many developers have proposed ways to transform this property, but nothing has actually happened. We've read about casinos, hotels, office space and most recently a mixed use development. It seems like they should figure this out before planning to many improvements to this area.
Second, Congress Parkway is essentially a major highway which doesn't lend itself well to pedestrian traffic. This plan tries to address some of this, but in our opinion Congress simply can't be a pedestrian friendly street. Hopefully we're wrong, but we have yet to see something that convinces us otherwise. Can anyone think of any major streets in Chicago that would pose as a template for making Congress pedestrian friendly? Michigan? Wacker?
The stretch of Roosevelt road from Michigan Avenue to the Chicago River in our opinion is a great example of a major road being beautifully transformed. Although we're not entirely sure about the city's plans for their other proposed 'signature streets', in our mind this stretch is what they should copy. With that said, we envision an extension of these improvements west towards the Dan Ryan Expressway.
The one thing we are unsure about is the red asterisks on the graphic above that is labeled "gateway feature". Will that be some sort of sign designating the area (similar to Old Town or Boys Town or Chinatown)? That's our guess, but not entirely sure.
One of the consistent things and bigger initiatives for the central area action plan is continuing the river walk so that it extends down the south branch of the Chicago River. In our opinion this is a great idea. We've frequently walked down Wacker and truly enjoy being on the river. However, this idea is pretty ambitious and probably something that the city doesn't really need until other issues are solved (schools etc.). We can dream, though.
So what do you think? Is this necessary? good urban planning? a waste?
(images from Central Area Action Plan)
A venture led by Mr. Giles has defaulted on a $19.1-million loan secured by a Prairie Avenue property where the developer had planned a controversial 479-unit project called the X/O Condominiums, according to Joubin Khorsand, an investor in the venture.The proposed development was planned to be located 1712 S. Prairie Ave.:
We recently stumbled upon this great article by Universal Sports that summarizes the pros and cons for Rio's bid. As has been repeatedly stated, this would be the first ever Olympic games hosted in South America. That is a pretty powerful attribute and something that differentiates Rio's bid from the rest of the competition.
However, often lost are the cons associated with Rio's bid:
It's abundantly clear what Rio is up against. In a March, 2008 report assessing the merits of what initially were seven 2016 bids, that list cut a few weeks later to the four formally designated "candidate cities" that will be put to the Oct. 2 vote, the IOC itself noted, "Crime in parts of Rio de Janeiro was considered to be an issue for the safety of people attending the Olympic Games. Should Rio be selected as a candidate city, assurances regarding protection and safety of persons traveling through certain parts of the city would be required."Yes, crime in Chicago is bad...but nothing like Rio. In terms of sponsorships, it's hard to expect Rio to compete with American (and Chicago) corporations. And this craziness about what their president (Lula) is saying...could you imagine if Obama said something like that?
Those "new markets for sponsors"? In this economic climate, how much sponsor money and interest will the IOC members figure can possibly be left over after the 2014 World Cup in soccer-mad Brazil for an Olympic Games just two years later? Moreover, why would the IOC, which seeks to get the benefit of every single day of the seven-year run-up from vote to opening ceremony, willingly cede five years of attention to FIFA, soccer's international governing body, and the World Cup?
Moreover, which of these observations are IOC members likely to remember most:
Lula (president of Brazil), speaking in London to The Times after his visit to Olympic Park at the end of the G-20 summit: "We are not a banana republic. Brazil has one of the most sound economies that many European countries do not enjoy today. I hope the international community will take that into consideration.”
Or Lula, speaking in Brazil in advance of the G-20 conclave, addressing the press at a news conference with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown at which, according to the BBC, the Brazilian president said of the global economic turmoil:
"It is a crisis caused and encouraged by the irrational behavior of white people with blue eyes, who before the crisis appeared to know everything, but are now showing that they know nothing." Questioned by a reporter, Lula went on: "As I do not know any black or indigenous bankers, I can only say it is not possible for this part of mankind, which is victimized more than any other, to pay for the crisis."
The IOC, dominated by European interests, tends to note such slights. It tends to move cautiously. China got those 2008 Games only after coming up short in a first bid, for 2000, won by Sydney -- and in the 2001 vote for 2008, the one thing the IOC could be certain about was that in giving a Games to China they would be Organized flawlessly. And they were.
All these things could play a role, but again having the first ever Olympic games in South America is pretty powerful. Only time will tell if it's going to happen in 2016 or in the future.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
South Loop Wine Cellar’s wine club allows patrons to receive 2 bottles of wine a month, chosen by Amy, and guaranteed to exceed the cost of membership. For $30, you receive a “Silver” membership and for $50 a “Gold” membership - the only difference being the price of the wines. You can chose two reds, two whites or one of each, and she will take into account any strong personal preferences. We got our first two bottles of red last week, and for $15 each, we were very impressed.We haven't been yet, but are eager to try it out!
If noodling is your thing, then you can join the spreadheads in September as The Allman Brothers Band and Widespread Panic team up for two shows:
Other acts include:
- Nine Inch Nails
- Ziggy Marley
- The Offspring
- REO Speedwagon
Monday, April 13, 2009
Although we don't know if it's Chicago's biggest advantage, it is interesting and if true is a powerful thing. We tried to find some stats on diverse international cities, but couldn't find much credible information.
"From athletes' point of view, when you come to a place where people speak your language ... it's very convenient for the athlete," Comaneci said before talking with IOC commissioners. She noted Chicago is home to many Romanians, making it more comfortable for her and her mother when she visits.
Organizers hammered on that message time and again. Mayor Richard Daley spoke of a city built and rebuilt by immigrants. Ryan noted the dozens of languages spoken in Chicago. On the IOC's final day here, the IOC viewed a video about the city's ethnic diversity in which the narrator said every Olympic team that comes to Chicago "will feel like the home team."
And Obama, in his video, painted Chicago as "a city where races, religions and nationalities all live and work and play and reach for the American dream that brought them here."
If it sounds like overkill, Frazier said it was necessary.
"Chicago's biggest advantage is it is the only one of the bid cities that the Poles should be cheering for, the Romanians should be cheering for," he said. "Show me a Greektown in Tokyo."
Out of the four 2016 candidate cities (Chicago, Madrid, Tokyo and Rio) which do you think is the most diverse?
CTA achieved a 4.1 percent increase in rail ridership in 2008 compared to 2007. For 2008, the rail system recorded a total of 198.2 million rides – an increase of 7.9 million rides over the previous year. The agency also significantly reduced slow zones in 2008.We love the new bus tracker and their new website is much easier to navigate. Congrats to the CTA on a successful 2008...hopefully the progress continues in 2009.
Safety improvements made last year were recognized, including upgrades to subway emergency exits. Upgrades included brighter lighting, high visibility signs, improved stairways and an instructional video to help prepare customers for evacuation procedures in case of an emergency.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Chicago is tailoring its offerings to where it believes it can most effectively compete – new immigrants and world class talent. Places like Columbus, Indianapolis, and Kansas City are focusing on a broader middle class. Neither way is right or wrong. Both types of places, and others too, can all find success by offering unique places for people to realize their own personal American Dream.A pretty neutral and politically correct stance, but it's hard to argue with it...we guess.
The other thing we found interesting was their take on the South Loop (and other neighborhoods in Chicago):
If you told someone 15 years ago you lived in the South Loop, they would have said, “Huh?” If you had told them you lived by the old Chicago Stadium, they would have thought you had lost your mind. These and other neighborhoods that were once derelict or dangerous, as well as some that were low key ethnic enclaves, have been transformed into bustling yuppie playgrounds for the new “creative class”.Personally, we hate the word yuppie, because of the negative connotation that comes with it. On the other hand the classification of "Creative Class" seems innocent and positive to us, so it doesn't really bother us.
What do you think? Are these fair classifications for the Sloop?
Friday, April 10, 2009
The area is also home to the legendary Chess Records (2120 South Michigan Ave.). The story of Chess records was recently made into a Hollywood story called "Cadillac Records" that garnered good reviews, but didn't really bring too much interest to the Chicago blues and rock history or movement. However, Beyonce's rendition of the Eta James' classic At Last has become extremely popular again (not that it wasn't popular to begin with):
Chess Records has also hosted various legends such as Buddy Guy, Koko Taylor, Bo Diddley, Muddy Waters, Chuck Taylor and even the Rolling Stones which imortalized the address by recording an instrumental during their first U.S. Tour in 1964 called "2120 South Michigan Avenue". Here is a cover of that instrumental:
The building is still there and is actually now home to Willie Dixon's Blues Heaven Foundation, which is also a museum of sorts. For more info on the foundation, The Chicago Journal has a good article about it as well information on the History of Chess Records.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
At issue is a complexity rooted in the American system of federalism as it intersects with Rule 37 of the Olympic Charter. That rule essentially shifts the ultimate financial responsibility for an organizing committee to the city in which the Games are staged. In practice, it has proven typical in other countries for the national government to backstop an organizing committee's operating budget. In the United States, it can't work that way.
Chicago has proposed an addendum to the contract, but the issue hasn't been publicly resolved or addressed. Chicago's rivals for the 2016 games have already pounced on this issue and probably will continue to bring it up to IOC members. Our guess is that this will be resolved, but this is still a big issue that is hanging over the Chicago bid.
This article by Universal Sports does a great job going into more detail about the "Host City Contract" issue. The article also brings up an interesting point that Chicago's financing approach could be seen as an innovation:
There's the possibility it (The Chicago 2016 Bid) may, in time, come to be seen as an innovation -- a new model of financing for future bids, even in those nations that typically have relied on national government underwriting. With the downturn in the global economy and the erosion in the credit ratings of some governments, among them Spain, it may yet prove shrewd indeed to spread risk not only across different levels of public entities but to obtain insurance coverage.
How much, for instance, would a guarantee backed by the government of Iceland
be worth now?
Will the IOC see it that way? Who knows...
(image from wearethepostmen.com)
In conjunction with the annual Sam Adams Longshot home-brewing competition,
Binny’s South Loop is holding a Chicago Home Brew contest. Along with the
judging, there’ll be a brewing demo, tastings of some of last year’s Longshot
winners, and cheese and sandwiches for nibbling. The winner gets a trip for two
to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver in September. Contestants should
bring a six-pack of home brew and a detailed written recipe. To enter the
Longshot competition, register at samadams.com and bring six additional bottles
to be shipped to Boston (on Sam Adams’s dime). 11 AM-3 PM, beer must be
submitted by noon for judging, 1132 S. Jefferson, 312-768-4400.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
However, it's hard to get a good sense of how they really feel since they have to put a good spin on everything at this point. There will be many news stories tomorrow and we will post anything we fell is interesting.
If you have some time you can check out the IOC's press conference today about their impressions and feelings about Chicago's bid here.
The IOC committee now goes off to Tokyo to check out their bid followed by Rio then Madrid. We will keep you posted on any interesting developments coming out of those evaluations.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Most importantly, we wanted to say thanks to all of our Sloopers for the great comments, emails, feedback, tips and help. Without you we would have never gotten this far. We appreciate your help and look forward to the future!
(Image created from chicagotribune.com)
You probably won't see us there, but we still imagine it will be a pretty good show.
The other big story today is that Valerie Jarret (who is a Chicago native as well as a senior adviser and close friend to Obama) said that:
the White House would set up an office to provide support for the Games and oversee a host of federal agencies. They said it's the first time the White House has done so before the final selection of a host cityAgain this displays the federal governments intentions to the IOC, which should be seen as a big sign of support (something that has been publicly criticized by the media and Chicago's rivals).
Tonight is the big gala at the new modern wing at the Art Institute. Oprah among other Chicago and international luminaries are scheduled to wine and dine with the IOC committee tonight.
The Chicago Tribune also has an interesting article today specifically criticizing one of the plans biggest attributes, the West Loop Transportation Center.
For more coverage, check out the Chicago Journal's take on parts of the plan.
There is a ton of plans for the greater Sloopin area and we will be reading/looking into plans for our specific neighborhood over the next couple of weeks. Stay tuned and please let us know what you like, hate or don't understand.
(Image from cityofchicago.org)
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Plans for the proposed 2016 Olympic Village and lakefront sports venues would force cyclists, runners and walkers to divert from long stretches of the paths east of Lake Shore Drive during virtually all of July and August 2016.This article obviously will stir the pot and upset many people that are already against the idea of having the games in Chicago. But come on...wasn't this assumed? You don't host a massive global event and expect the city to function as it would on any summer day.
We at Sloopin use the lakefront a ton and feel it's a huge asset to our neighborhood, but are fine with these restrictions. Are we upset that we won't be able to use our beloved lakefront for two months? Obviously. But we also realize that these small inconveniences would make the area nicer once we can use it again. The way we see it is that two months of restrictions is well worth it since we will be able to reap the benefits of these huge improvements for years to come.
The new owner of the Old Colony Building would like to turn the South Loop landmark into student housing. The Old Colony at 407 S. Dearborn is an 1894 Holabird & Roche design that's a seminal work of the "Chicago School" or architecture.(Image from Sun-Times Library)
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Although this wasn't a big surprise, anytime Obama lobbies for the games you can't help but think Chicago might actually get them.
It was a beautiful day today in Chicago, but unfortunately almost the entire day was spent in conferences. Tomorrow is the big venue tour and the weather doesn't look very good. If it's any consolation for Chicago, when London was chosen to host the 2012 summer games the IOC toured their city when there was a blanket of snow on the ground. It shouldn't be that bad tomorrow...
Friday, April 3, 2009
You can listen to Keith Campbell, who was one of the leads in the development, talk through the concept here and download the PowerPoint he is going through by going to this link (it's the February 11th session).
Campbell talks about the planning and design of the project and how it was influenced by European walking streets and plazas. We're a huge fan of this idea, but are skeptical that they can pull it off. If they do we will definitely be in for a treat.
Regardless, we found the lecture very interesting and enjoyable!
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
If you're up for the test, read both and tell us how you feel. Our guess is that you will sympathize with one opinion or the other.
Optimist - Chicago Tribune's "A letter to the Olympics"
Pessimist - Chicago Reader's "An open letter to the IOC"
Let us know which one you feel better portrays our city.
The grand finale will be a gala dinner on Monday night in the new wing of the Art Institute, where the participating restaurant is a closely guarded secret (it's Spiaggia), there will be surprise guest performers (Jennifer Hudson) and security will be extra tight.You would think the IOC will get a taste of our famous deep dish pizza at some point, but it's not bad if they have to settle for Table Fifty-Two, Naha and Aigre Doux.