Chicago's 2016 Olympic Bid 

An archive of the Reader's coverage by Ben Joravsky and Mick Dumke

Dear International Olympic Committee
One last argument for why Chicago doesn’t need, want, or deserve the games. (10/1/09)

Olympic Compromise
The City Council authorizes the mayor to spend as much money as he wants as long as he tells them about it afterward. (9/10/09)

Funds and Games: Chicago 2016's "Stewardship Report"
A new donor report claims transparency but obscures details on who’s paying for the Olympic bid. And then there's the question of why they're paying. (9/10/09)

There's no "NAY" in "TEAM"
Critics often deride the Chicago City Council as a mayoral rubber stamp. Aldermen want you to know the critics have it wrong. (9/9/09)

Ready, Set, (Property Tax) Hike
How will Daley balance the 2010 budget? Prepare for higher property taxes—but not till after the 2016 Olympics are sited. (9/3/09)

Who’ll Be the Bad Guy Now?
In a Trib op-ed, Manny Flores backs away from the cap he proposed on public funding for the Olympics. (8/13/09)

You Asked For It ....
No sooner had I promised to keep the TIF mumbo jumbo out of my earlier explanation of Mayor Daley's goofy Olympic Village financing scheme then the e-mails and calls came in: Please, Ben, give us the mumbo jumbo! (8/6/09)

More Magic Beans
When Mayor Daley first told us about his plan to put an Olympic Village at the Michael Reese Hospital site, he promised that it wouldn't cost the public any money. He's now saying the reason it's not going to cost us any money is that it's coming out of a TIF. (8/6/09)

Michael Reese Hospital: The First Sacrificial Lamb
Preservationists' battle over the Michael Reese Hospital campus is just a taste of how the Olympics will drive public policy if Chicago wins the games. (8/6/09)

Wanna Buy an Olympics?
Why is the mayor's A team only now hitting the neighborhoods to pitch Chicagoans on the Olympic bid? (7/23/09)

I'm really not the only Olympics skeptic out there
Interesting development in the coverage of Chicago's Olympics campaign in today's Tribune: the no-games crowd got about as much space as the pro-games crowd. (7/22/09)

We don't trust 'em either
"How can we trust your promise to come in on budget—the city's always over budget with its projects?" (7/16/09)

I Tried
I said I'd listen with an open mind when the Chicago 2016 folks explained why Chicago needs the Olympics. But how soon they lost me. (7/9/09)

Chicago 2016: The Musical
The Blue State Cowboys follow up "Pay to Play," their tribute to Rod Blagojevich, with a song about Chicago's Olympic bid: "Good King Rich." (7/6/09)

On the Hook
Did Mayor Daley ever really believe the public wouldn't have to pay for the Olympics? (7/2/09)

Olympics? Budget? Whatever: Mayor Daley keeps it copacetic
"I signed nothing!" Daley cried out. He ran from behind his podium. "I signed nothing! Please! Write that--the Reader!" (6/25/09)

The Olympic games have already begun
Behind the talk of Olympics funding is a struggle to determine if Mayor Daley gets just what he wants. (6/25/09)

Go get 'em, Tiger!
County commissioner Tony Peraica asks state's attorney Anita Alvarez and attorney general Lisa Madigan to take legal action against Mayor Daley over his Olympic funding commitments. (6/24/09)

Deja vu all over again
The city's Olympic funding controversy is sounding a lot like the parking meter mess--in other words, business as usual. (6/23/09)

Mayor Daley: Big Olympic Spender
For the last three years, the mayor's been insisting he has a magical formula for getting someone else to pay. I told you not to believe him. (6/18/09)

Reading between the Olympic lines
Believing the promises of Chicago's Olympic planners requires what we'll call extraordinary fairness. (6/12/09)

What TIFs Giveth, the Olympics Taketh Away
Instead of getting a new pool out of the games, the west side will lose a pool and gym we just paid $30 million for. (6/11/09)

Rick Telander For Mayor
Sportswriter Rick Telander speaks the truth about Mayor Daley's Olympic bid: there's no way the games should come to a town whose politics are so "blatantly corrupt and/or stupid." (6/5/09)

The Worst Council Vote?
The Olympics are like a bad joke that Mayor Daley is playing on his loyal constituents. If the International Olympic Committee gives us the games, it will probably cost us much more than selling off the parking meters. (5/28/09)

Mayor Daley's Olympic Promise
The Hyde Park Herald asks the question: Is the Olympic community benefits agreement legally binding? (5/11/09)

Senator Jones Weighs In
Former Illinois Senate president Emil Jones dares to break the silence about Mayor Daley's Olympics. (4/23/09)

The Rush to Raze
If Mayor Daley's administration has its way, bulldozers could be moving in to demolish and discard at least 28 of the 29 buildings on the former campus of Michael Reese Hospital. Last week the city opened the bidding process for the job. (4/23/09)

The Olympic Blank Check
The Olympic bid is looking more and more like a blank check for Mayor Daley. (4/13/09)

IOC, are you listening?
Members of the Olympic committee reportedly promised to read Joravsky's Reader article telling them to take their Games to some other city. (4/10/09)

The Editorial Boards Speak
The Tribune and Sun-Times take the tough stand of endorsing Mayor Daley's 2016 Olympic bid. (4/2/09)

An Open Letter to the IOC
Why you don't want to give Chicago the Olympics (4/2/09)

They got theirs
Aldermen approving a plan to ensure community benefits if Chicago wins the 2016 Olympics have a lot to be thankful for. (3/27/09)

The Usual Suspects
The fix is in, as the mayor's guys announce that they support his plan for the 2016 Olympic games. (3/27/09)

Pardon the interruption
The City Council's hearing on TIF transparency is interrupted by demands for a more inclusive Olympics plan. (3/16/09)

The $10.5 Million Mascot
A closer look at the city's official Olympic bid—and what's missing from it. (2/26/09)

City for Sale
While we've all been riveted by Governor Blagojevich's alleged plans to sell Barack Obama's Senate seat to the highest bidder, Mayor Daley has been busy making his own deals, mortgaging the city to balance the budget and win the Olympics. (1/22/09)

Priorities
The City Council spent more time Tuesday praising Roland Burris than discussing plans to use taxpayer money on the 2016 Olympics. By a long shot. (1/14/09)

Community benefits Backed by activists, five aldermen propose a plan to ensure Chicago's Olympics bid yields "community benefits." (1/13/09)

Your Olympic TIF Program
The city reveals what we already knew in our heart of hearts: the Olympics will be paid for with TIF funds. (1/12/09)

Talking tough, acting soft
After much tough talk, the City Council rolls over the Michael Reese Hospital deal and gives Mayor Daley exactly what he wants. (12/17/08)

More Olympic Games
Barack Obama supports Mayor Daley's 2016 bid at his own risk. (12/4/08)

It's the Mayor, Stupid
Mayor Daley's facing a $420 million deficit,And what does he intend to do about it? Apparently he's hoping to spend his way out of the doldrums, via the Olympics. (11/13/08)

A clean power play
An environmental group asks for a pollution crackdown--for the Olympics, if not for city residents. (8/28/08)

Mayoral memory
Just back from the spectacle in Beijing, Mayor Daley again promises it won't cost us any money to stage the Olympics. (8/20/08)

Just Say No
The newly formed coalition Communities for an Equitable Olympics raised the possibility that maybe, just maybe, staging the games in 2016 wouldn't be such a hot idea for Chicagoans. (8/7/09)

Transit authority
Glad you enjoyed the trains in Beijing, Mr. Mayor. How about trying out ours? (8/7/09)

Mayor Nice Guy gives us a break
The real reason Mayor Daley's holding back on a property tax hike (hint: it has to do with the Olympics). (7/29/08)

Magic Beans
The mayor's new Olympic Village plan would bet taxpayer dollars on risky real estate speculation. (7/24/08)

Come See The Show
The Plan Commission meets Thursday to discuss Mayor Daley's plan to buy and demolish Michael Reese Hospital. (7/16/08)

Seize the Moment
South-side community leaders have a narrow window for negotiating with the mayor over his Olympics plans. (7/10/08)

This just in--and this, and this . . .
Each day brings more happy news from the friendly folks at Mayor Daley's Chicago 2016 Olympic Committee. (7/1/08)

The Road to 2016
Is paved with rubber-stamp votes like the City Council's decision on the Children's Museum. (6/19/08)

A word to the wise
Some friendly advice to Mayor Daley on how to win the 2016 Olympics. (6/5/08)

You can fight City Hall
Olympics foes take heart: Lake County's rebellion against the Olympics pays off as Mayor Daley moves the proposed Equestrian Center out of their forest preserve. (4/18/08)

A City Off Track
Amid the Olympic fervor, local athletes are still getting shortchanged. (4/17/08)

It's All About the Olympics
Why is the Park District clamping down on its volunteer advisers? (4/3/08)

Let the games begin
Beyond the smoke is the first clear sign that TIFs will fund the mayor's Olympic dreams. (11/1/07)

Thar She Blows
The Olympics are the white whale lurking behind the mayor's new tax increases. (10/25/07)

Mayor Nice Guy
If he wants Chicago to win the 2016 games, Mayor Daley is going to have to do something he doesn't like to do -- suck up to people. (10/9/07)

A Promise Made to Be Broken
Could a 20,000-seat Olympic field hockey arena really leave Jackson Park unspoiled? (10/4/07)

Thanks for nothing
The latest shaft in the mayor's bid for the 2016 Olympics. (8/31/07)

They Say Nay
Naturalists and neighbors of a Lake County forest preserve are up in arms about Chicago's plans for an Olympic equestrian center. (7/5/07)

Transit and the Olympics
Could poor public transit cost Chicago the Olympics? (6/8/07)

Ben Joravsky, city planner
TIF Watch: The next tax increment financing district on the horizon would be a convenient source for Olympics funding. (5/11/07)

Will the Games Displace Their Games?
Washington Park's users fear the Olympics will leave them nowhere to play. (5/10/07)

Think Smaller/TIF Watch
While Chicago courts the Olympics, future Olympians practice in school hallways. (4/19/07)

Can Shame Stop the Games?
Some folks think a city that hasn't resolved its history of police torture shouldn't get to host the Olympics. (3/22/07)

Better the IOC than me
One alderman's explanation for why he voted in favor of the $500 million Olympic financing plan (3/16/07)

Let the Games Begin
The question isn't whether the public will pay--it's how the city will hide the amount. (3/15/07)

"Stir the Soul"? Not quite
The real significance of the 45-5 City Council vote in favor of the costly Olympic financing plan. (3/14/07)

The west side gets a new swimming pool
The politics of the west-side Olympic aquatic center. (3/12/07)

He's Going to Win: Here's why you should vote against him anyway.
Daley's proposals for audacious projects keep coming. The reconstruction of Soldier Field was followed by the construction of Millennium Park, which is to be followed by the 2016 Olympics. How the city's going to pay for the Olympics is anyone's guess. (2/22/09)

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