CHICAGO — The 12 turn, 2.2-mile NASCAR street race is already turning heads in Chicago.
Earlier this week, NASCAR released information about the plans and planned closures for the July 1st and 2nd weekend.
“We are committed to being a good partner in this city,” said Julie Giese, President of the NASCAR Chicago Street Course. “To working alongside all of you to ensure everyone has a good idea of what to expect.”
Giese led a virtual meeting Wednesday where she and other city promoters promised a positive economic impact from the race, with Giese saying the race is expected to generate more than $113 million for the local economy.
“The people that are coming to this race are going to be eating in our restaurants, riding in our taxi cabs, landing at our airports,” said Michael Jacobs, President of the Illinois Hotel and Lobby Association. “And all of that helps to benefit the downtown area, helps benefit the city.”
Earlier this week, residents questioned planned street closures that will be in place for more than a month this summer.
“We have enough going on, enough closures, enough traffic,” a local Chicagoan told WGN reporter Julian Crews earlier this week. “I don’t think that it’s helpful for the city.”
The first pre-race activity begins Friday, June 2, with parking restrictions, while some streets will start closing to car traffic on June 10.
Southbound DuSable Lake Shore Drive will close June 28 from Randolph Street to McFetridge Drive, with closures in both directions the days of the race.
NASCAR representatives answered several questions Wednesday addressing accessibility, safety and noise concerns.
Giese said more than 2,000 barriers will be placed along the course, and NASCAR is testing racing equipment to lower the decibel output of the cars racing on the track.
“NASCAR has been testing mufflers for the NASCAR cup series cars and we will be running those mufflers on the race here in Chicago,” Giese said.