Bear Country: Four Homes Near Potential New Stadium Locations for the Monsters of the Midway
In search of a venue larger than their previous home of Wrigley Field, the Chicago Bears moved into Soldier Field full-time in 1971. Since then, Soldier Field, and its classically columned façade, has become a symbol of the Bears, with 61,500 fans pouring into the stadium on game days to watch their favorite team.
But after more than 50 years at Soldier Field, which has become the smallest-capacity stadium in the NFL, the Bears have started to search for a new home. They first declared their interest in moving by purchasing the former Arlington Park race track in Arlington Heights. But as negotiations with that suburb have dragged on, the Bears have received several overtures offers from other towns eager to have (or, in the case of Chicago, keep) the team.
As the Bears season gets underway, we’re taking a look at potential new homes for the team…and nearby homes for you if you’d like to follow in their footsteps.
Given the fact that they’ve already invested nearly $200 million in the land purchase, the leading candidate for the Bears’ relocation would have to be considered Arlington Heights.
Just a short drive from the potential future stadium is this five-bedroom, four-and-a-half bath residence nestled in the sought-after Virginia Terrace neighborhood. Is it just a coincidence that the neighborhood happens to be the namesake of the Bears’ matriarch, Virginia McCaskey? The home offers a grand two-story entryway, which leads to a chef’s kitchen and a spacious living room. The primary suite is the star of the show, complete with vaulted ceilings, two spacious walk-in closets and an ensuite bath with dual vanities.
Outside, the home offers a private yard with a stamped concrete patio covered by a pergola, giving you the perfect combination of shade and sun for hosting a barbecue on gamedays.
There is, of course, the strong possibility that the Bears don’t leave the Windy City at all. And the south lakefront is still the most likely downtown location for the Monsters of the Midway, whether they play in an enlarged and renovated Soldier Field or a brand-new stadium nearby.
In that case, this South Loop townhome with a rooftop deck offering views of Soldier Field, is the perfect Bears den. The extra-wide all-brick home includes four levels of living space, with three bedrooms and two-and-a-half baths, set atop an underground two-car garage.
The residence has been thoughtfully designed with an open-concept living/dining area that’s great for entertaining. Large east-facing bay windows provide an abundance of natural light, while the penthouse den with a wet bar and built-in wine fridge, presents the perfect place to entertain guests on game days. And the home is within walking distance of the stadium…for now.
Once the Bears announced that Arlington Heights was no longer their singular focus, Naperville’s mayor immediately wrote a letter inviting the team to set up shop in the sought-after western suburb. The two parties have held preliminary meetings but have not taken any further action.
For the ultimate gameday hangout space, this five-bedroom, five-and-a-half-bath Naperville residence is an entertainment haven. You can watch the game in the lower level’s spacious entertainment area, while serving up drinks and snacks at the bar or enjoying a bottle of wine from the wine cellar. The lower level also offers a 3-reason room, which opens to the resort-style backyard that features a pool and spa.
The upper level offers a grand primary suite complete with a fireside lounge and an elegant bath with a freestanding tub, large glass shower, dual vanities, and walk-in closet. Three additional bedrooms share this upper level, which also boasts a bonus loft area and walkout deck.
Most recently, the north-suburban town of Waukegan also threw its hat into the ring to host the Bears. Waukegan is lobbying on its abundance of transportation options, the opportunity for another lakefront venue and more space as reasons the team should make the move.
If that sounds like a winning combo to you, this three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bath residence in the Pleasant Hill subdivision offers hardwood floors, new mechanicals and a recently finished basement. You can entertain on the covered deck in the private backyard, or in the family room off of the kitchen that boasts a vaulted ceiling and a cozy gas fireplace- perfect for a gameday watch party.