In a public meeting downtown this evening, the Chicago Park District is unveiling some ambitious new plans for Northerly Island, the former site of Miegs Field airport and current home to the temporary structure that is the Charter One Pavilion summer concert venue.
The new plans, which reimagine the space as a 91-acre nature sanctuary, include replacing the pavilion with a permanent structure, which famed architect Jeanne Gang calls a "lower profile" music and performance venue with a green roof. The new venue would have a seating capacity of about 14,000 -- double the size of the current pavilion.
The new designs focus human activity on the north end of the island, with the concert venue and Adler Planetarium, while the southern end becomes wetlands with bike paths.
Charter One has been operated as a concert venue by Live Nation since 2005. Construction and operation of the new venue is open for bids. More than 80 companies have requested information about the bid proposals, including Live Nation and local competitor Jam Productions. C3 Presents, which operates Lollapalooza in Grant Park each summer, is not on that list.
Will whoever wins that contract give a hint as to who has an edge in taking over Chicago's city festivals?