Chicago Urban League Releases Olympic Economic Impact Study

June 28, 2007

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The Chicago Urban League has a message for the city's 2016 Olympic Committee: Don't shut out the South and West Sides. Today the Urban League released an economic impact study on the games.

Leaders say if the Olympics come to town, black communities should benefit.
 
Chicago Public Radio's Natalie Moore reports.
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Three large Olympic construction projects are planned in predominately African-American neighborhoods. Two of those communities – Douglas and Washington Park - have high unemployment rates.

Urban League President Cheryle Jackson says the Olympics could leverage jobs and economic opportunities for those areas.

Jackson says black businesses should get a share of the $5 billion it would cost to put on the Olympics.

The Urban League study lists dozens of recommendations. It calls for a transparent bid process and a monitor to ensure minority business has a role.
When Atlanta hosted the 1996 Olympics, black businesses received approximately 40 percent of the contracts.

The Urban League hopes Chicago at least matches that amount.

I'm Natalie Moore, Chicago Public Radio.