Archives for March 2009
Chicago’s skyline is legendary and affords sailors spectacular scenery while racing or cruising.
The Fordham Spire is the latest project in the history of Chicago’s architectural development.
Today, Reuters highlights the slowing of construction of the Spire as emblematic of the worldwide economic slowdown.
We look forward to the successful completion of the Fordham Spire, for its inspired origins, innovative design, and physical beauty as a landmark achievement bringing another source of pride and character to Chicago for all to admire and enjoy.
REUTERS:– Global Recession Stalls Skyscraper Construction:
We attended a preview last week of the Chicago 2016 Olympics Bid Committee presentation for the Olympics selection committee.
The venue for sailing was identified vaguely as offshore the Burnham Harbor entrance and McCormick Place. The venue for rowing was located at Monroe Harbor between the Shedd Aquarium and Navy Pier. Details were sparse and these locations may be subject to change.
Dislocation of boats from the harbors during Olympics and construction was not mentioned. There are many other aspects of the Olympics bid that have greater priority in the bid presentation, let alone if Chicago is chosen as host city.
The Chicago bid is a responsible effort to address the concerns and requirements brought on by hosting the Olympics, local politics and financial controversies notwithstanding. The bid focuses on solving the many logistical and pragmatic concerns that are involved in the overall project, including attention to winding down after the Olympics. In this regard, the Chicago bid is considered very strong among the other possible host cities, due to its solution-oriented approach and the local geography, Olympic village and infrastructure providing a good host location.
However, it was noted that unforeseeable and unknown factors impact the host city decision. For example, one country recently sent a delegation of schoolchildren to vote whimsically for their city of choice.
The planned new 31st Street harbor is included as a component of the Olympics bid.
The upcoming timeline of the selection process includes Olympics selection committee visit to Chicago in April, and ultimately the final decision made on October 2, 2009 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The decision will be made by a series of votes in a process of elimination, removing one city each round until the winning host city is chosen.
Regardless of the outcome of the Olympics bid, the city of Chicago will purchase the approximately 37-acre Michael Reese Hospital property before the end of June 2009. The Michael Reese property will have a TIF tax benefit for its developers.
Current Illinois governor Pat Quinn has pledged to increase the state’s Olympic guarantee to $250 million, adding to the city’s previously-announced guarantees. The Illinois budget is long overdue and still undecided, having been delayed by Blagojevich and the fiasco surrounding his arrest and the Burris senatorial appointment. Currently, the Illinois budget has a deficit more than $11.5 billion, according to Quinn.
Today on WLS 890 AM radio, Quinn described the state’s Olympic guarantee as third in line after Chicago’s $500 million guarantee and the bid committee’s $500 million guarantee funded by “private insurance”. Interestingly enough, the recent controversies in the news involve similar transactions, as AIG is a major insurer of government, and the city has been plagued with scandal involving city ties to insurance agency schemes locally.
Pat Quinn also highlighted the problem of road potholes throughout the state, and stated his goal to fix the roads, even aspiring to be the “pothole governor” if that were to be his legacy.
Potholes were in the news earlier this week, as the city generated more controversy by rebuilding roads in the vicinity of the Olympics site, while ignoring necessary road repairs throughout the city, particularly in nearby neighborhoods that have been neglected for years.
If you are interested in supporting the Chicago 2016 Olympics bid, the bid committee is seeking financial support and commitments by institutions or investors to demonstrate to the Olympic selection committee that there is sufficient financial backing to meet the guarantee requirements and establish the feasible likelihood that the overall project and infrastructure can be developed and completed successfully to host the Olympics.
In particular, if you represent a banking institution, investment company or other organization that can provide written documentation of your level of commitment to investment, underwriting or lending on behalf of the project, please contact the bid committee, or contact us for specific contact information.
Last night during his appearance on the the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, President Obama likened his bowling ineptitude to the Special Olympics.
Chicago’s Mayor Daley has stated on numerous occasions that US President Obama would be a key factor in influencing the 2016 Olympics bid selection favorably, by dint of his high official rank and connection to Chicago serving to impress and wow the selection committee.
Apart from the audacity of offensiveness in Obama’s gaffe, one must now wonder if Obama reflects favorably or not on Chicago in the eyes of the Olympics selection committee.
Too bad politics does not have the same rules as the Olympics, because our country certainly voted for amateurs to occupy the White House this term.
Unfortunately, although his chaotic and ill-considered policies are driving up the price of gold and emptying the pockets of taxpayers for years to come, Obama is not winning any gold medals for his presidential abilities.
Lake Michigan Sail Racing Federation invites you to two seminars this Saturday March 21, 2009 at Crowley’s Yachtapalooza – Free! Forward this announcement around to your friends.
New Racers and What Crews Should Know 9:00-10:00AM
Learn how to get involved with sailboat racing and what it really takes to get a boat to the starting line.
by Glenn McCarthy
2009-2013 Racing Rule Changes 12:00-2:00PM
Learn about changes to the racing rules for 2009-2012.
by Dr. Warwick Coppleson & Glenn McCarthy
For directions and other seminars go to http://www.crowleys.com
SAVE THE DATE
Supported by the Chicago Yachting Association
and hosted by Columbia Yacht Club
August 21-22, 2009
Columbia Yacht Club
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society invites the greater Chicago yachting community to raise their sails for the 13th Annual Leukemia Cup Regatta. Sailboats will be competing on separate courses in a variety of categories while having the opportunity to raise funds to find a cure for blood cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.
For more information call 312.568.7735 or email Juliette.DeCarlo@lls.org. You may also visit www.leukemiacup.org/il to register online.
Ted Jones announces:
RACING RULES & SAILING SHARP SEMINAR
The seminar is designed around the concept that knowing the racing rules of sailing, makes racing an enjoyable and safe contest while using one¢s skill, seamanship, and applying the principles of sportsmanship, and fair play.
The conversation will include all elements of a race and the 2009-2012 rule or rules that apply. Seminar handout material will be given to each participant. The event is open to all sailors, including those racing under one-design and handicap rating systems and in junior programs. The seminars are hosted by yacht clubs around the shore of Lake Michigan.
Facilitators include US Sailing Judges: Allan A. Teske, Robert Sargent, Nancy Glover, Ted Jones, Andrew J. Kiener, Dennis Bartley
The cost of the seminar is Twenty Five Dollars ($25.00). A lunch is included in the cost of the seminar and will be provided by the host club. The starting time for all sessions will be 09:00 local time and end at 16:00 Bring your rule book. New rule books will be available for sale.
Session dates and host clubs
1. March 7, 2009 Chicago Corinthian Yacht Club, Il. 773-334-7575
2. March 21, 2009 Waukegan Yacht Club, Il. 847-623-4188
3. April 4, 2009 Muskegon Yacht Club, Mich. 231-755-1414
4. April 18, 2009 Boyne City Yacht Club, Mich. 877 731 1422
5. April 25, 2009 Macatawa Bay Yacht Club, Mich. 616-335-5815
6. May 2, 2009 Columbia Yacht Club, Il. 312-938-3625
FILL OUT, TEAR OFF AND MAIL WITH CHECK
Boat name & Sail #
Make the check payable to: Allan A. Teske, RR&SS Seminar
Mail To: 9900 South Longwood Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60643
Phone: 773-239-4440 email: email@example.com
The Chicago Park District is responsible for the operation of Chicago Harbors.
Summary budget documents for 2009 are available online.
The capital expense budget remains a work in progress, with plans for two new harbors pending bond financing now on temporary hold.
National Public Radio describes a possible new solution for the lamprey problem, gratuitously invoking vampirism and sex to tell the story:
A team at Michigan State University has discovered how to create sort of a “Love Potion No. 9” to attract an invasive species of fish out of the Great Lakes.
Originally from the Atlantic, the lamprey is usually considered a parasite. But in the Great Lakes it has achieved the status of predator. Researcher Nicholas Johnson says the fish is killing off other large predator species and has “completely changed the ecosystem.”
Lampreys use their suction-cup-like mouths to attach to other fish and feed off their blood. Their prey is often left for dead, giving the lamprey the moniker “the vampire fish.”
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service spends $20 million annually to control the jawless fish. Now they may have a new weapon to combat the invasion — lamprey perfume.
The substance is created from the pheromones the male lamprey releases to attract females during mating season. Johnson and his team are using it to redirect the females into traps.
Offshore wind farm on Evanston’s horizon?
Chicago 2016 Olympics Update: More Money, Please. Illinois Governor Quinn Pledges State To Commit $250M Guarantee for Olympics
Chicago Tribune reports:
Daley’s inability to provide anything more than a limited financial guarantee could make it difficult, if not impossible, for the city to win the 2016 Summer Games, many Olympics experts say.
Chicago Olympics boosters are scrambling to increase taxpayer support for the 2016 Games to shore up a fundamental weakness in their bid just weeks before international officials arrive to evaluate the strength of the city’s pitch.
At the heart of the push is a statistic that Chicago officials have not mentioned: No city in the past quarter-century has won the Games without a blanket guarantee to cover all financial risks.
Chicago will not make such a guarantee, but Mayor Richard Daley and other leaders of Chicago’s plan won a pledge this week from Gov. Pat Quinn to raise the state’s share of the guarantee by $100 million, to $250 million. State lawmakers moved to fast track the guarantee Thursday, and Quinn said time was of the essence with Olympic officials scheduled to visit in early April.