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The [Tuesday] Papers

"The Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority is negotiating with a general contractor for the proposed DePaul arena near McCormick Place, but the two sides are struggling with a price tag that has soared to as much as $250 million, about 75 percent more than the original estimate, according to people close to the bidding process," Crain's reports.

"McPier next week is expected to award a design-build contract for the arena and an adjacent 1,200-room Marriott hotel to a venture led by Bethesda, Md.-based Clark Construction Group, those sources tell Crain's. The cost of the 51-story hotel is expected to be in line with previous estimates, or a total of roughly $400 million.

"But a sticking point is the 'dug-in' design of the 10,000-seat arena, which places its playing floor well below ground level. That feature has pushed construction costs above the $140 million that McPier and city officials optimistically projected when they announced the project in May 2013, sources said."

Maybe the city could sell naming rights to the arena. Like, to DePaul.

*

"A DePaul spokeswoman did not return a message yesterday seeking comment on the prospect of increasing DePaul's financial commitment to the project."

Let us pause now to consider DePaul's mission statement:

"As a university, DePaul pursues the preservation, enrichment, and transmission of knowledge and culture across a broad scope of academic disciplines. It treasures its deep roots in the wisdom nourished in Catholic universities from medieval times. The principal distinguishing marks of the university are its Catholic, Vincentian, and urban character."

I'm not sure how that's relevant, but there's a lot of other stuff about dignity and the light of God and so forth that I'm certain theologians would agree means a prosperous institution shouldn't rip off taxpayers. But hey, DePaul also promises to students that "The city is your campus." By which, they mean our campus.

*

If a naming rights deal can't be struck, how about calling the arena the Rahmper Room?

Yeah, not so sure about that one, but I went for it.

This Bruce Is Not The Boss
"Now that Bruce Rauner has been elected, the question is: What does Gov. Madigan do now?"

I started with that line and the rest fell in place for my latest Op-Ed in Crain's. Feel free to comment, critique and share.

Beachwood Memberships Are Back!
We've fixed a glitch in our PayPal buttons, so all that money you tried to give us that one time and got turned away - try again! This time we'll accept it.

Chicago's Election Day Blues
The Excusable, The Malicious And The Incompetent.

Memo To Marc
On Monday, I wrote this:

"Someone's put a muzzle on Marc Trestman. Last year he was awesome in press conferences, explaining his game decisions impressively and persuasively in a refreshingly open style. This year he's been far more circumspect and, today, he reached a new low with a weird, post-victory press conference in which he basically refused to answer any questions."

And actually, it was our very own Jim "Coach" Coffman who first, in one of our award-winning podcasts, noted the change a few weeks ago.

But what occurred on Monday was just bizarre.

"There was a time not all that long ago when Marc Trestman's day-after-game news conferences carried the feel of a stimulating college lecture," Dan Wiederer writes for the Tribune.

"Trestman would settle in at the dais in the Halas Hall media room and dive into the details of the previous day.

"While eager reporters scribbled notes, Trestman would describe the intricacies of plays that worked and those that didn't. He would offer introspection into his team's mood. He would listen closely to questions, then pull back the curtain on his philosophies and decisions.

"And that's why Monday's proceedings in Lake Forest felt so awkward. The 14-minute gathering was filled with odd pauses and evasive responses. After a 21-13 win over a division rival, no less.

"Trestman seemed like a suspect in a police interrogation room without his lawyer. Harmless questions seemed to have him feeling trapped and uncomfortable."

Maybe Trestman is trying to win the locker room back by growing his inner child.

*

"Number one, at our place, we're really trying to grow the man," Trestman said. "Because we think growing the man helps our football team . . . We want to build a locker room of guys that have character, respect each other, send the right messages of selflessness and honoring the game."

That's not the message you're sending right now, Coach.

Cubcakes
That's my new name for our local baseball media, whose coverage of the Theo era is perhaps best exemplified by this headline from last week: "Kyle Schwarber 'Excited' For Chance To Learn From Russell Martin."

A prospect who has never seen a day over A ball is excited to learn from a free agent who didn't sign with the Cubs.

I'm not sure any other headline illustrates so perfectly the dual set of assumptions Cubcakes keep making about this franchise.

Caveat: This particular story was reported by the Sun-Times's Gordon Wittenmyer, who has been one of the few appropriately skeptical reporters covering Team Theo.

*

Also, can reporters stop acting like it's their money? The Ricketts' are insanely rich. They don't need our financial sympathy.

*

-

BeachBook
* How Often Are NFL Reporters Lied To? Every Day.

* Chicago River LEGO Landscape.

* An Open Letter To Oprah, Whose 'The Life You Want' Tour Asked Me To Work For Free.

-

The Beachwood Tip Line: Forget the Packers, beat Lovie.



Permalink

Posted on November 18, 2014


MUSIC - The Week In Chicago Rock.
TV - Slow TV Chicago.
POLITICS - Dangerous, Low-Wage Industries Depend On Immigrants, Refugees.
SPORTS - Beachwood Sports Radio: Dear Cubs, Make It Stop.

BOOKS - Meet Chicago's American Writers Museum.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Beachwood Photo Booth: Mail Call.


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