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Lincoln Yards developer teams up with Live Nation for riverfront entertainment district

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As many as new five venues could come to the North Branch megadevelopment

All images courtesy of Sterling Bay

One week after announcing a partnership with Chicago Cubs owner Tom Ricketts to bring a United Soccer League team and stadium to Lincoln Yards, developer Sterling Bay revealed it will work with Live Nation on a year-round entertainment district within its 70-acre North Branch megaproject.

Under the agreement, Live Nation—a California group specializing in concert promotion and parent company of Ticketmaster—will help build and operate between three to five new venues. In addition to the the previously reported 20,000-seat soccer stadium, the plan will include smaller event spaces ranging from 100 to 8,000 seats, according to the Chicago Tribune.

“We are thrilled to be executing on such a unique project,” said Sterling Bay managing principal Andy Gloor in a statement. “Chicago already has a reputation as an entertainment hub and we are excited for the community to have easy access to a variety of new events with some of the biggest names in music.

Straddling Chicago’s Lincoln Park and Bucktown neighborhoods, the Lincoln Yards proposal is slated for the industrial riverfront land vacated by Finkl Steel, General Iron, Lakin Recycling, and the city’s Fleet and Facility Management complex. It calls for residential, office, hotel, and restaurant components plus a six-acre park and an eastward extension of Chicago’s 606 Trail.

Thursday’s announcement from Sterling Bay and Live Nation was accompanied with updated renderings of the Lincoln Yards stadium as well as a first glimpse of new waterfront amphitheater.

While the entertainment component of the Lincoln Yards project is rapidly coming into focus, the project is still in the early phases of planning. “As of today, no proposal has been formally submitted or reviewed by my office and public meetings to solicit community feedback have yet to be scheduled,” said 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins in a Wednesday night email to residents.

According to a new ‘North Branch’ tab recently added the alderman’s website, Hopkins identifies a commitment to open space as well as improved transportation infrastructure as “guiding principles” to be balanced against the project’s economic benefits.