The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Daley Makes Another Effort to Rally City Before Olympic Bid Decision

By Anthonia Akitunde in News on Sep 26, 2009 10:00PM

Photo by swanksalot
Mayor Richard Daley attempted to gain support for Chicago’s Olympic bid one last time before leaving for Copenhagen, where the International Olympics Commission will decide which city will host the 2016 Olympics.

Daley highlighted the positive as he spoke at a Friday morning rally in Washington Park, the proposed home of an Olympic Stadium, according to Chicago Breaking News and the city via press release.

“We see it as a once in a lifetime opportunity that would help redefine
our city and create a host of new opportunities,” Daley said. He likened the bid to other big moments in the city’s history, such as the Chicago Fire and the World’s Columbian Exposition.

Chicago is competing against Madrid, Tokyo and Rio de Janeiro to host the Games in 2016. The IOC makes their decision next week.

The mayor said negative coverage in the press and public concern over the economic crisis may have lowered enthusiasm for the bid. However, the city stands to gain a lot from the opportunity, Daley stressed.

“If we are fortunate enough to host the Games, billions of people from around the
world would be exposed to Chicago as a destination for tourism and business --
which would create jobs and generate new revenue,” he said, via press release.

Daley said the Games would bring in “$20 billion in new economic activity, including more than $1.5 billion in business taxes across the state,” a estimate that is in sharp contrast to the $4.4 billion net economic gain an independent study found. He also said the win would spur federal government funding for transit, infrastructure and security needs, the press release stated.

Along with acclaim and increased revenue, Daley said via press release that the Games would bring lasting structures and programs that would better the city. These include permanent sports facilities in Washington and Douglas Parks and World Sport Chicago, a youth sports program promoting fitness and teamwork.

Daley will lead Chicago bid supporters (including First Lady Michelle Obama and White House support staff) during their upcoming trip to Copenhagen, according to Chicago Breaking News. The week will involve "schmoozing and lobbying that will lead up to a final presentation Friday morning just before the vote by the International Olympic Committee," the report said.

[Breaking News]