Now that the NFL has agreed to play an outdoor Super Bowl at the New Jersey home of the Giants and Jets, America’s next-biggest cold-weather city is asking, “When is our turn?”
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell spoke today at a ceremony recognizing Soldier Field for taking steps like using environmentally friendly cleaning products and installing energy-efficient lighting to become the first NFL stadium to meet the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council. Emanuel confirmed that he also told Goodell that Chicago is “a perfect place to have a Super Bowl.”
If the New York Super Bowl goes off without a hitch, other cold-weather cities with outdoor stadiums will surely begin to make bids to host Super Bowls of their own. Emanuel pointed out that Chicago just had a NATO summit which ran smoothly as evidence that the city could handle the Super Bowl crowds, but the question is whether Soldier Field is the right place for a Super Bowl. Not only is it an outdoor stadium in a cold city, but it’s a stadium with a seating capacity of just 61,500.
Goodell was noncommittal about the possibility of a Chicago Super Bowl.
“We know the great passion football here in Chicago,” Goodell said. “It’s one of the things we’ll look at if there’s interest in here hosting.”
There’s interest from Emanuel, but he won’t have an easy time convincing a majority of the NFL’s owners that Chicago is a perfect place to have a Super Bowl.