clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Chicago 2016: The Summer Olympics that got away

New, 16 comments


[Chicago 2016 Bid Book]

Although the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia are coming to an end this weekend, Chicago's most recent and best shot at hosting the international athletic event came to an end in October 2009 when the International Olympic Committee eliminated the Windy City's host bid in the first round of voting. After spending millions of dollars sprucing up the city and countless hours of lobbying from some of the city's country's most powerful figures, Chicago's 2016 dreams vanished over night. The plan to host the Summer Olympics in the Windy City brought together an all-star line up of Chicago based architects and planners, and after an enormous amount of effort, the 2016 Master Plan was formally submitted by architectural heavyweight and hometown superstar firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.

The Games in Sochi have been marred by technical errors and the incessant griping from media representatives about the living conditions in the Russian city. But Chicago's Olympic bid will be remembered for being the lowest scoring bid in the first round, essentially making it dead on arrival at the 121st International Olympic Committee Session.

Come with us as we take a walk down memory lane, and take a look at what could have been. If Chicago was selected as the host city for the 2016 Summer Games, the city's transformation would have been well underway by now as our fair city would have been the very next in line to host the event. Sadly the official Chicago 2016 site is now defunct and has been replaced by an online betting website, however we've pieced together a series of renderings and videos that highlight the city's plan for the Games. Make no small plans, and Chicago certainly did not. As Cubs fans say, there's always next year. Er, next four years.


Here's a video rendering tour of the Olympic Village, Stadium and event sites.


And a very similar tour with Decathlon champ Brian Clay and Gold winning gymnast Shawn Johnson.


A very disappointed crowd of hundreds gathered at Daley Plaza during the IOC's first round of voting.


And here's a full length doc for when you've got time to kick back and relax.

· Chicago 2016 Olympic Bid Review Summary Findings [The Civic Federation]
· Report of the 2016 IOC Evaluation Commission [IOC]
· 121st IOC Session [Wikipedia]