First let me start with I BACK THE BID... WOO HOO!
Now with that out of the way... let's talk turkey. Recently, and from the start of the Olympic Bid process, I have heard comments such as... "when we get the bid we will be able to __________ (fill in the blank)" with words or phrases such as ... "hire more people", "generate more revenue", "see more businesses open". You know what I mean.
There is a 1 in 4 chance we may not get it! Not because the president did not go to Copenhagen, or because we did not present a better plan... it could just be that South America has never hosted the world games. So now what... what's next?
This CONCERNS me quite a bit; especially when I hear our elected officials throw our economic development eggs into one basket. I expect more of them, and from them. When we speak about... jobs, infrastructure, innovation, expansion, revitalization, and sustainable and renewable ideas; What is their plan if no world games and after 2016?
This city, like a phoenix, rose from the ashes after the fire of 1871 to rebuild and become a place of envy and a symbol that nothing is impossible. In today's climate the world games have become the main course and not the gravy, as it should be. There is the central area plan, this plan has been regarded as a transportaion project by some elected officials instead of an opportunity to expand the city to all it's residents. Additionally, as an opportunity to plan for light rail and hybrid buses (there are 135 operating currently). We could be building these buses instead of purchasing them from Canada.
We are only limited by our ideas. Remember Daniel Burnham? "Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir men's blood." Well what and who is stirring the pot of ideas? In fact have we all fallen prey to the phrase "when we get the Olympics?" I know I did for a bit, and have been growing anxious to know what is going to stir my/our blood. In fact, there are developments/projects that are sitting and waiting for the bid announcement. Like this (the world games) should matter.
Come to think of it this great city has faced many challenges and has withstood them. This is no soft city, as Carl Sanburg has written, this city is a fighter, a tall bold slugger. He wrote Chicago (a great poem) as a response to those who looked down on the city. Today it was his Dave Chapelle moment where he said "We're Chicago Bitch." Unapologetic for our energy and our cunning.
This is an international city before, and after the world games. As I have said, "the world lives here so the world should play here."
Well, whad ya' think? This BLOG may mean nothing after October 2nd. I just hope it reminds us to keep planning, working, living, laughing, and loving no matter what happens on what has become that fateful day.
What plans and projects do you think should be in the works?