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Bears shift from Arlington Heights move, commit to downtown Chicago

UPI

March 11 (UPI) -- The Chicago Bears committed to contribute more than $2 billion to build a new downtown stadium, shifting from plans to construct a facility in Arlington Heights, president Kevin Warren announced Monday.

"The Chicago Bears are committed to contributing over $2 billion to build a stadium and improve open spaces for all families, fans and the general public to enjoy in the city of Chicago," Warren said in a statement.

"The future stadium of the Chicago Bears will bring a transformative opportunity to our region -- boosting the economy, creating jobs, facilitating mega events and generating millions in tax revenue. We look forward to sharing more information when our plans are finalized."

The proposed domed stadium would be publicly owned and situated near Soldier Field, the Bears' current home. The Bears announced in February 2023 that they finalized a purchase of the 326-acre former Arlington International Racecourse property. They did not start developing it, however.

They started playing games at Soldier Field, one of the oldest and smallest stadiums in the NFL, in 1926 and moved in full-time in 1971. The Bears' lease at Soldier Field is set to expire in 2033.