Chicago: So How Will a Trillion Dollars Be Put to Good Use?
- Feb 24, 2009
Don’t you wonder what will be the lasting accomplishments of the federal stimulus package? As well as the intended and immediate impact on individuals? I believe it could greatly enhance the economy of states that agree to strategically allocate their respective share. Today, we discuss stimulus packages not in hundreds of millions but in hundreds of billions and even a trillion or more dollars.
I advocate using a fraction of those billions to statewide and nationally endorse Chicago’s pursuit to host the Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2016. Let’s use a tiny fraction of those available billions to significantly impact our bid pursuit with a goal to immediately stimulate the Chicago economy through job creation, urban renewal, infrastructure repair and for our own industry to create a new demand for office space.
It is long passed that an Olympic event is only a city event – let’s look at Sydney, Beijing, Athens and in 2012 – London. Each one of those had or will have their full government support. This is no longer just a seventeen day event for a global television audience. In 2016 it is an event that will begin generating global traffic through forward planning by the world’s travel and sport industry and media, establishment of each participant country’s outpost offices, and job creation that will commence this fall with the announcement of the host city.
Is there a current better business use for a few billion of those stimulus dollars? Is not infrastructure and job creation the single most important goal? My good friend Ron Harvey, Vice President of the Australian Olympic Committee, talked to an audience of Chicago business leaders, less than two years ago, about how Sydney benefitted from seven years of build-up, seventeen days of unbelievable free global exposure, and now continues to evidence many years of vibrancy from the transformation of the Olympic Village into a residential and business community.
Long have we believed that Chicago is not a second city to anywhere but actually a world class international gateway. Just a few billion of those very accountable dollars can help us elevate this bid into a powerful challenge. It should not be overlooked that the world applauded America’s choice of Barack Obama as our President, who just like Tony Blair and London would be supportive of his adopted home town winning the 2016 award. So many times, billions of tax dollars are unaccounted for on pet projects with little
or no impact. If we are awarded these billions then they do need to be accounted for, but they will also have a tangible immediate impact on the region and not just Chicago.
Lend your support to Pat Ryan, Mayor Daley and Chicago 2016.