Report: A Dome on Soldier Field Won't Keep the Bears in Chicago

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Report: A Dome on Soldier Field Won’t Keep the Bears in Chicago

Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears don’t play a game of consequence for another 65 days. And yet, the home of Chicago’s football team has been at the center of some wild discussions this week. First, with reports of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot considering putting a dome on Soldier Field with the hope of enticing the Bears to stay. And later, with some renderings of a re-imagined museum campus around Soldier Field laying out the vision.

HOWEVER, it sure feels like Mayor Lightfoot’s last-gasp effort to keep the Bears in Chicago is one of those too little, too late scenarios. Especially with the statement the Bears released after the city’s renovation renderings began making the rounds. You’ll want to check out the full thread from Daily Herald reporter Chris Placek, but these two tweets are key:

That statement might be the most notable one the Bears have made regarding a potential move out of Soldier Field. Declaring the Arlington Heights project as the only one they are exploring for a new stadium is a significant one. As is the comment that they aren’t looking into other options while under contract with the seller of the Arlington International Racecourse property because of their contract feels noteworthy, too. After letting those words sink in, there is no way to talk around it — the Bears sure as heck sound “all-in” with regards to moving to Arlington Heights.

Even still … we have a ways to go before we get to that bridge, let alone cross it. The team still needs to get out of its contract with Soldier Field, which likely won’t happen until after the cost of breaking the lease with the city dips significantly in price (in 2026?). And the franchise still needs to put together the type of state of the art facility that will make leaving worthwhile. Of course, it’s worth pointing out that they’ve hired the folks who designed the Raiders’ Allegiant Stadium (which is dreamy in its own right).

As for what happens with Soldier Field, the property still has lakefront charm, potential to grow into a downtown destination. We could continue to see college football games and concerts in the building. Maybe it can be re-modeled to into a state where it entices a second NFL team if the league goes through with expansion plans. But it is evident that the stadium’s future isn’t in hosting the Bears.

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.