Event Venues in Chicago Hope to Host 2016 Olympic Games

The current state of the economy is keeping everyone pretty focused on the year ahead, especially in the meetings market. But as one of four finalists in the running to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, the city of Chicago certainly has a good reason to look much farther into the future.

Competing against other finalists Tokyo, Madrid and Rio de Janeiro, Chicago has a lot to gain if selected this fall by the International Olympic Committee. In December, Chicago 2016, Chicago's Olympic committee, announced that the Games are expected to stimulate $22.5 billion of incremental economic activity in Illinois through 2011 to 2021. Activity in Chicago alone is expected to account for $13.7 billion.

The Games would also create 315,000 new job-years. Job-years are estimated by calculating the total hours of jobs created—full-time, part-time, permanent and temporary—into the equivalent of full-time jobs.

Spurgeon Richardson, former president and CEO of the Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau, believes that hosting the Olympic games can also positively affects a city's reputation for meetings and events.

"From a meetings and conventions standpoint, the Olympics really put Atlanta on the map worldwide," Richardson told MeetingNews. "It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that really strengthened our ability to go out and attract major conventions from around the world."

Chicago has proposed to use many of its existing venues to create an Olympic Park along its lakefront. The Chicago convention center, McCormick Place, for example, will host 11 Olympic disciplines as well as the International Broadcast Center and Main Press Center. Rowing and canoe-kayak/flatwater events can take place in the harbor by popular Chicago attraction Grant Park.

To explore more of the venues Chicago has to offer to the Olympic Games, visit the Cvent Supplier Network. To learn more about Chicago's candidacy, check out Chicago 2016.

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