Bears’ Ownership Keep An Open Dialogue With Chicago Politicians In Stadium Pursuit


The McCaskey family wants a new Chicagoland stadium.

The stadium game is not exactly a tough contest to figure out. An owner will tell a city if you don’t meet our demands, we will go elsewhere. Elsewhere most of the time means staying in that city with either a new or renovated stadium. In Chicago, the owners of the National Football League’s Bears, the McCaskeys, went on a tour of northern Illinois with the purpose of finding some city, town or village that is willing to give them some form of tax incentives or tax breaks and maybe some money so that Bears ownership can build a stadium village. Politicians in Arlington Heights, Aurora, Chicago, Naperville, Richton Park and Waukegan wanted a chance at building the Bears’ planned stadium-village complex. The McCaskey family purchased a 326-acre piece of property in Arlington Heights that could house a stadium-village. At one point, the McCaskeys were dedicated to the Arlington Heights site and planned to move the team to the Chicago suburb but then the McCaskeys received the tax bill on the property and they didn’t like what they saw. The property tax was higher than anticipated and that caused the McCaskeys to do a double take.

Now the McCaskeys seem to think maybe Chicago is their kind of town. The Bears president Kevin Warren said he recently revisited talks with politicians about building a stadium complex in Chicago. The McCaskey family is contractually obligated to use Soldier Field for Bears’ home games until 2033 but the lease can be terminated early if the McCaskey’s pay a lease breaking penalty. Warren is not going to break off talks with Arlington Heights or not listen to pitches from politicians in Aurora, Naperville, Richton Park or Waukegan because the McCaskeys are looking for public money to build a stadium-village. That’s how the stadium game is played.

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