No Olympics for Chicago in 2016

Chicago will not be hosting the 2016 Olympic games.

Goodbye skyrocketing  property values! It is quite a let down. Towards the end there, there was really a feeling of inevitability about it. I guess we were overly optimistic.

I remember when we went to London during their bid for the 2012 Olympics. There were “back the bid” signs everywhere we went and I thought, “How exciting! It would be neat to be a part of that.” I never really got that feeling here in Chicago, like everyone in the city was pulling for it. Certainly, everyone in my neighborhood was not pulling for it. There were some legitimate reasons, and some not.

For example, one concern was that bringing the Olympics, specifically to the poorer South Side neighborhoods, will raise property values pushing out the people who live paycheck to paycheck and therefore rent instead of own. If the property is more expensive, the rent will be forced up, and they won’t be able to afford to pay. This is a legitimate concern, however, I don’t know how I feel about that exactly. I do see the point, but on the other hand, A) I don’t rent, I own, so rising value is good for me, and B) I want my neighborhood to be nice. I refuse to accept the argument that improving the neighborhood is a bad thing, and I refuse to accept a crappy (sometimes dangerous) neighborhood.

Other concerns are ridiculous, such as the people complaining about how the Olympics will create traffic or parking problems. Sheesh, talk about self-centered. I don’t want this major ridiculous event that half the world would kill to get because for 2 weeks I might have trouble getting a parking spot! Waaah! I also reject the arguments about keeping the stadium out of the park that hardly anyone wants to go to now anyway. I hear people complaining that hosting an Olympics is a money losing venture. That is probably true, if you look at it on a city wide scale. But if you live in this neighborhood, at Olympics ground zero, it is not true. Think about it: all of the infrastructure that will be built, will be built here. But all of the cost will be split across all of Chicago. So the people out in the suburbs are essentially paying for your infrastructure improvements. They should be the ones complaining, if anybody!

I don’t know if the public opposition had anything to do with it or not. There could have been a whole host of reasons. And, hey, if Rio de Janeiro wins, I won’t feel too bad. The Olympics have never been hosted anywhere on the South American continent. That is a shame. I can’t begrudge the judges if they award it to them over the U.S. who has hosted many.

By the by, there isn’t quite as much excitement over the Paralympics, but don’t discount them…I just learned of the existence of wheelchair fencing!!

74 thoughts on “No Olympics for Chicago in 2016

  1. “Other concerns are ridiculous, such as the people complaining about how the Olympics will create traffic or parking problems.”

    Also, IMHO, countries shouldn’t really be spending huge amounts of money on ahem…recreational things such as sports. They could instead channelize all that into preventing (too late for that I guess)/reducing Global Warming…

    That’s only my opinion though…

    Like

    • Poor excuse regarding the property value would increase. When the game was held in Los angeles. The only increase I remember was the parking fee at the diferent venue

      Like

  2. I don’t see what the Olympic games have to do with the value of homes. And the only city to profit from the Olympics was Los Angeles in 1984. LA already had most of its venues built. So there wasn’t this large expense of having to build new venues like you get in other places.

    Hosting the games brought this city together and since then nothing has duplicated what the Olympics accomplished. So many people worried about traffic, crime, and how the city would look to the world and in the end it came out looking wonderful.

    There were no issues with crime, or traffic. In fact there was less traffic.

    The problem with Chicago is that they will try to milk this and will try to get a new venue for most of their places. This almost guarantees a negative ending.

    Like

    • My condo is basically ground zero for what would have been the Olympic center. So building all the infrastructure, and all the attention that would be focused there, would make it a more desireable neighborhood, thus increasing property values.

      Like

  3. Por naturaza sinto muito pelo os outros País. Mas fico feliz que o Rio de Janeiro teve essa oportunidade de ganhar a Sede das Olimpíada 2016. Obrigada Meu Deus.
    Thank you my god.

    Like

  4. YEEEEEEEEEEEEEES!
    CHICAGO IS NOT ON TE OLYMPICS IN 2016 BUT BRAAAAAAAAZIL IS!
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    THIS IS SO GOOD! =)
    HERE IN BRAZIL, EVEBORY IS SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS!!
    THIS IS REALY REALY GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    =)

    Like

  5. I’m glad Rio de Janeiro got it. It’s going to be such an amazing opening ceremony, given Brasil’s incredible culture and music.

    Hopefully their logo will be better than Vancouver and London’s…

    Like

  6. nicely said!
    I like your argument and the way to said it re Rio de Janeiro. Would be more than fair ti give it first time ever to South America.
    although…wuold that mean Summer Games in Wintertime? ;o) (southern hemisphere….)
    cheers

    Like

  7. as someone who was on the inside for many years, it is a double edged sword at best. The biggest negative is the cost. The experience of having an Olympics in your city, like I did in LA, or going to a Games, is incredible. The feeling is magical. In the end, it has to make economic sense or the city, like Rio or Beijing or Seoul, has to be willing to spend billions on infrastructure. You may want to read my comments at http://oceanaris.wordpress.com

    Like

  8. “I refuse to accept the argument that improving the neighborhood is a bad thing.” — The argument is not that improving neighborhoods is bad, it’s that making a place more expensive is not necessarily and “improvement,” and that the assumption that people who can afford higher rent are somehow better neighbors is ignorant at best. How we define “improving” is important, and if it means slowly (or quickly) kicking out working people to make room for richer people, then I hope my neighborhood doesn’t “improve” any time soon.

    Like

  9. I thank God that Rio will be the olympic city in 2016….it was the only one with true chances to win….For example…
    what they thought in Madrid? 2012 in London, and 4 years later in Spain….wake up! Is the same continent, and just a couple of thousands km beetween.
    Or Tokio….same thing….it´s not so important here the power of the country, its president or king….the important thing is the desire.
    Thank you!

    Like

  10. Rio seems like a better choice than Chicago. It seems fair to let Rio have the Olympics. It will be the first time for it.

    Obama needs to focus on national security, not Letterman or the Olympics, or health care that will cost too much ,and cover people who are not legal.

    Like

  11. Great place to visit, but in comparison to the other 3 cities in the chase, why did Chicagoans think they had any chance in the first place? No surprise here. other than the Prez couldn’t even win the bronze medal!

    Like

  12. Hi,

    My name’s Victor Hugo, I’m responsible for the Ao Sugo blog (unfortunately only in portuguese). I’m brazilian and I must say that I really appreciated your impressions about the Olympic Games and your receptive opinion about the Games on Rio/Brazil.

    To be honest I’m not a huge fan of Rio de Janeiro and I’m aware of its social and economic problems, what makes me worried about the Games here, but as our president says, maybe it’s an opportunity to the country to grow up a little bit, let’s see…

    Thank you everyone for your support

    Like

  13. Part of the reason? This headline:
    Olympic Committee Member to Chicago bid team: US Customs is “harrowing experience”

    They didn’t want to subject all those foreign athletes to the TSA experience. How many people with funny names would have been stopped at the door and refused entry?

    Like

    • For sure that was part of it. It was brought up during the Q&A section of the Chicago presentation. President Obama said he would have the State department create some sort of special Olympic panel to work on the problem or something, but who knows if it would have amounted to anything.

      Like

  14. US loosing the hosting bid to brasil should not be a thing of worry to them,though according to other stuff i read about the peoples mind and ideal of hosting the festival in chicago,i know that the US government care more about the citizen and will not want anything to make them feel bad afterall but still its a good try for them.NOT like what we ve here in my own country where the government only think about their own POCKET,BELLY AND their FAMILY alone.pls dont ask me where am from?
    US lose,its a good lose.CONGRATULATION TO BRASIL.

    Like

  15. I don’t have any ties to Rio or to Brazil, but I’m really, really happy for them. I reckon they’ll host an amazing games and what’s really nice is that they wanted it so much. They’ll treasure their games and be 100% behind it, which unfortunately isn’t the case here in London, where after the initial excitement a lot of people started complaining.

    Like

  16. As a “carioca” I´m really excited with this event! In fact I allways thought that Chicago would win the 2016 olympics.

    But if you didn’t get that this time, anyway you’ll be wellcome here in 2016

    Like

  17. Ding, Dong, Olympics are Dead!
    Which Olympics?
    The Corruption Olympics!
    Ding, Dong, the Corruption Olympics are Dead!

    High, Ho, the Mayor’s Out!
    Richie Dailey’s Gone!

    He’s Gone! He’s Gone!
    He’s So Soon To Be Gone!

    Ding, Dong, The Corruption’s Soon To Go!

    . . . He’s Off to Fine A New Job . . .
    Parsed ’cause the People Will Speak!

    Like

  18. There’s always 2020, Chicago. It’s South America’s turn. Rio is a great choice. Like issues you raise about rising property values and the potential displacement of people, I wonder what Rio will do with the millions who live in the slums (favelas) around the city. I wonder how Rio will handle media interest in the socio-economic conditions of the city of extreme wealth and poverty. Much like Bejing, I imagine that reporters and cameras will not be allowed in certain areas of the city and that tourists will not be allowed to stray too far off the beaten path. I could be wrong.

    Like

  19. Considering that Brasil has always been a country fully devoted to sports I think it fit fine.
    That, and Rio is one of the biggest touring states there, giving the tourists an opportunity to both see the olympic games and visit the wide range of gorgeous local beaches. Maybe that way South America will get more respect over other countries, and Brasil gets a chance to raise it’s economy.

    Like

  20. Great place to visit, but in comparison to the other 3 cities in the chase, why did Chicagoans think they had any chance in the first place? No surprise here. other than the Prez couldn’t even win the bronze medal!

    Like

  21. Congrats Rio!! Although I love my country..and it’s many cities (Chicago included) I am currently living in Rio and have been rooting for the win.

    In response to Ribbie, I think it will be interesting to see how the media handles the socio-economic issues, mainly the disparity between wealth and poverty here in Rio. Although it will be the first time the Olympics are held in Brazil (and S. America) the country, but more specifically Rio is no stranger to tourists. Rio’s New Year’s and Carnival celebrations are among the top in the world, generating swarms of tourists every year. The breadth of the beaten path that you speak of, has in my opinion expanded considerably over the years. It is not uncommon to see “gringos” (any non-Brazilians) in favelas, ‘seedy’ parts of town and the like. I’m excited to see the city step up to the challenge of hosting the 2016 Olympic games!

    Like

  22. I’m so glad Chicago lost. Let’s not beat around the bush, I live in Chicago, hopefully not for long. The city is a dump. Between the crime, patronage, and inefficient government, Chicago is the last place any major event should occur.

    Egg on your face Mayor Daley.

    Like

  23. I wouldn’t believe the Olympic ’16 for Rio De Janeiro or Chicago? I don’t think of Chicago for protest said “It’s not going to happen” A.K.A for Olympic Summer Games 2016 and Winter Games.

    Like

  24. As embarrassing as it was, I believe this will fade quickly. Although I’m sure President Obama has more important things to discuss rather than where the next Olympic javelin throw will take place…

    Like

  25. US is like hell for all players, the good game lovers are in South America and best of them all is Brazil, the fans out there are the real game lovers, they deserve that and all USA’s people should learn something from them!

    Like

  26. it’s really good to see ppl from all the world beeing happy 4 us , brazilians !
    It’s a good opportunity to show the world how tourists deserve to be attend too ;D

    Like

  27. Almost everyone here in Rio is delighted with the choice! Rio is a perfect city to hold this type of event. It is a young city, with almost 1/2 of its population 6.500.000 under 30 and many potential new Olympic winners will be discovered until 2016. Rio has hosted the Pan-American games with great success and will be hosting the World Cup in 2012. All of these events are excellent training grounds for the Olympics. Since 1960 when the capital of Brazil moved from Rio de Janeiro to Brasília, the habitants of this brilliant city have had an “identity problem” combined with a great loss in income, dividends and all the glamor that goes with being the capital. The city has finally found its call on sports and I we believe that we will do an outstanding job hosting the event. The city will grow with it also. I remember Atlanta before the Olympics, it was an overgrown Southern town. It found a new profile and today it is a sophisticated lady. We can’t foresee the changes in Rio de Janeiro, but I am sure they will be for the better. My husband who is an American, cried along with all of us, here, when the announcement was made. We wanted it very very much.
    I don’t have a home to invite anyone to stay here during the Olympics, but I would like to invite anyone who is willing to open his/her heart to new adventures to come to this wonderful corner of the World. It’a about time the rest of the world learns a little bit about Brazil.
    Lesson number one: we speak Portuguese.
    Lesson number two: we are like the US, a countru of immigrants.
    Lesson number three: the largest immigrant populations in order of size:
    Italians — 1/5 of Brazilians are of Italian descent.
    Japanese — the largest number of Japanese people outside of Japan
    Germans — immigrant group larger than the Portuguese
    Portuguese — 4th largest immigrant group.

    There is a lot to be amazed at. Come and enjoy. The party will be FORMIDABLE!

    Ladyce West

    Like

  28. I gess Brazil was the country that more was dedicated to this project and everyone can see this. Our president, Lula, all the athletes who were present and the brazilians of the whole world are a proof of this, an emotion never was seen in such a way. And the first Olympic Games in South America, OH GOD! What responsibility! I’m very happy that Rio wins. With the games they will come much more from what only athletes and medals, I really believe that it will do a sensitive difference in the way of life of the Brazilians.
    Congratulations Brazil, for one more victory
    Parabéns Brasil, por mais uma vitória.
    Rio 2016! É o Brasil mostrando que veio pra ficar!

    Like

  29. I love the attitude you display here about it going Rio de Janiero as no South American country has hosted it before.

    I’m kinda weirded out that Chicago has had such opposition to holding the Olympics – one of the world’s biggest events – but eh, if they don’t want it, then I guess it’s right that they don’t get it, though sucks for the Chicago people that did want it.

    Like

  30. Hi, I read everything you wrote, and I agree, I get afraid how it can work here in Rio. Good for south America, good for Rio, but how good? I live in the suburbs, I believe things won’t change that much here, cause the games will only happen around beautiful Rio. But I believe something can change, more children will have a chance to have sports as a way of life instead of guns. At least once the government will take out money to give us something, it’s not all we need, but I think things will make Rio a little better for us too.

    Thanks for being nice at all to us!

    Like

  31. Bottom line: Most Chicagoans didn’t want the games. IOC saw that and hit the ejector button. NNNNNNNNNNNNN … thanks for playing, Chicago!
    BTW, the ’84 Olympics were no windfall for LA. When the Russians pulled out (as a shtup for the US not showing up in ’80 because of the Russian invasion of Afghanistan), the attendance dropped precipitously. All those expecting to profit from reselling tickets, renting their house or apartment/condo for big buckaroos, or just hoping for whirlwind business from their everyday livelihoods, were sorely disappointed.
    Hats off to Brazil. This is something that they wanted, not just for themselves, but for all of South America – who is long overdue for a visit from the 5 rings flag. And, for those who think that they won’t be able to pull it off, don’t bet against this emerging market juggernaut. They are on pace to be the world’s 5th largest economy by the time the athletes march into the stadium for opening ceremonies. Yes, the Chinese set the bar very high last year in Beijing. But, the Brazilians know hoe to put on a huge party. I can’t wait to see what happens when Olympic and Mardi Gras spirit combine for the 2016 Summer Games.

    Like

  32. It’s amazing news that Rio has got the chance to host the Olympics. History is created mainly because of the fact that South America is playing host to the Olympics for the 1st time which I feel is Exciting because Brazil is like an Exciting Living Organism. I really like the point made about Property Values because when we speak about hosting Major Events like these, More than Infrastructure or anything else, It is the co-operation of the people that really matters a lot(Traffic Management being the least of the worries). Besides Brazil were really dedicated to the Bid. The 2016 Olympics will definitely be an Amazing Experience!!!!

    Like

  33. Chicago is a wonderful city, especially in the night but i do not think it is good enough for Olimpic Games… Sorry folks but it is my strong opinion. this city is perfect for night life, not sport life.

    Like

  34. talking about night life, there are few cities in the world that compare to Rio de Janeiro when it comes to night life. It’s helpful to visit the site “Live your Passion” to learn more about how Rio is preparing for the games (http://www.rio2016.org.br/en/Default.aspx) and I’m also recruiting people to write a blog with me so we can organize tweetups of Chicagoans in Rio for the games and other events. (People from other places are welcome as well, it’s just that the name of the blog is http://www.chicagoinrio.wordpress.com
    Cheers!
    Carol

    Like

  35. Pingback: The Fracus « Is this thing on?

  36. Pingback: Winter Olympics 2010 « Is this thing on?

  37. Pingback: Updated Blogging Timeline « Is this thing on?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s