In the latest twist in the ongoing efforts to secure the Chicago Bears a new stadium, reports indicate that the team is focusing on the lakefront and not on Arlington Heights.
The belief has been for a couple of years that the Bears were focused on developing the former Arlington racetrack into a stadium after they acquired the property in 2023.
But since they closed on the property last February, negotiations between Arlington Heights school districts and the team over the property taxes of the land have caused a stalemate.
That stalemate, coinciding with changes in Chicago’s mayor, from Lori Lightfoot to Brandon Johnson, as well as Bears president from Ted Phillips to Kevin Warren, has helped the team re-focus on Chicago.
Greg Hinz of Crain’s Chicago Business broke the latest story. It has been confirmed by a WCG source, too.
Our source says the Bears have funding issues with Arlington Heights, but the city of Chicago is more flexible. Our source also believes that the Chicago Park District is ready to make some concessions in this matter and that the possibility of having the Chicago White Sox and the Bears with brand-new stadiums miles apart would be huge for tourism.
The Bears are looking at the current South Lot area, going so far as to hire a firm to explore options for that area.
Hinz reports that funding would be a big hurdle but there are some state funding and other avenues that could open up.
The long and short of it is, there is still a long way to go, but the Bears aren’t done in Chicago and this saga is long from being over.