While organizing and executing the 2008 Chicago NACCC we worked closely with local government, law enforcement, community groups, churches and neighborhood organizations to ensure that the event would be public, safe and at home in the community. In planning for the 2012 CMWC we have been meeting with the Chicago Mayors office, local aldermen and police officials working in concert to determine the best location for the event.
Naturally a certain flexibility must be involved in the planning or execution of an event more than two years in the future, which is why we have assembled a shortlist of locations and are negotiating with the various components of the city government to determine which will work best for such a high profile and prestigious event.
Location One | Financial District
It's been a dream of ours for some time to actually host a sanctioned event on the cities streets, enjoying the same public space use that other events, like the Chicago Marathon, have. Chicago's financial district, set in the heart of the loop, is an ideal location with minimal weekend business, the ability to re-route traffic as to not disrupt the core of the city, recently paved streets providing an excellent racing surface and, best of all, the ability to more accurately recreate a working messenger day for the participants.
Location Two | Milton Lee Olive Park
During the NACCC we developed an excellent relationship with the Chicago Parks District and we've scouted Milton Lee Olive Park, on Chicago's North East lakefront, as a potential candidate for 2012. The park itself has an amazing path system which would lend itself naturally to racing. Set right on Lake Michigan the park offers both a spectacular view of the water and Chicago's skyline.
Location Three | Goose Island
A quiet island on the weekend, Goose Island is surrounded by water and industrial warehouses, a uniquely Chicago experience, as this forgotten zone is surrounded by some of the cities' most expensive neighborhoods.
Location Four | Northerly Island
Northerly Island is a 91- acre peninsula that juts into Lake Michigan at the heart of the Museum Campus- just south of the Adler Planetarium, east of Soldier Field, and not too far from McCormick Place, the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum of Stuff and Things. While possibly the least urban of the potential sites, it is a stunning venue, as it is surrounded by Lake Michigan, Chicago's own terrifying inland sea, with Chicago's high-rise skyline directly to the west.
Location Five | United Center
United Center, home of the Bulls and the Blackhawks, is not as scenic as other proposed race sites, but it is closer to the neighborhoods we all live in, and may be easier to deal with as it's privately owned, and would not need government permission or permits. One idea of many.
Location Six | Printer’s Row
Printer's Row, also known as Printing House Row, is a neighborhood located south of the Chicago downtown area known as the Loop. It is bounded by Congress Parkway on the north, Polk Street on the south, Plymouth Court on the east, and the Chicago River on the west. This neighborhood overlaps significantly with the officially designated landmark Printing House Row District. Just to the south of the District is Dearborn Station, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. Originally, the buildings in this area were used by printing and publishing businesses.
Location Seven | UIC
Located on the near southwest side, The University of Illinois at Chicago Campus would be an unexpected treat- plenty urban, well located, and with ample empty lots and one way streets to set up a good course, yet green enough to make two days standing in the sun tolerable for all. A possible dark horse candidate indeed.