Chicago mayor blasts Bears' stadium tactics: Focus on 'beating the Packers finally'

Raymond Boyd / Michael Ochs Archives / Getty

Stadium negotiations between the city of Chicago and the Bears are getting personal.

Bears president and CEO Ted Phillips announced Thursday that the team recently submitted a bid to purchase the Arlington International Racecourse in Arlington Heights, located 30 miles west of Soldier Field.

"It's our obligation to explore every possible option to ensure we're doing what's best for our organization and its future," Phillips said.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said the move is "clearly a negotiating tactic."

"The Bears are locked into a lease at Soldier Field until 2033. In addition, this announcement from the Bears comes in the midst of negotiations for improvements at Soldier Field," Lightfoot said in a statement.

"As a season-ticket holder and longtime Bears fan, I am committed to keeping the 'Chicago' name in our football team. And, like most Bears fans, we want the organization to focus on putting a winning team on the field, beating the Packers finally, and being relevant past October. Everything else is noise."

Soldier Field opened in 1924. It underwent a 20-month modernization renovation that concluded in 2003.

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Chicago mayor blasts Bears' stadium tactics: Focus on 'beating the Packers finally'
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