NASCAR is heading to the streets of downtown Chicago for the first time this summer. Fans in Illinois and elsewhere have shown a lot of anticipation for this and a lot of people are excited. But as with any major event, there are also concerns about how it could negatively impact the surrounding area, especially businesses and tourist destinations like the Shedd Aquarium.
Excitement for NASCAR in Chicago in July
Fans are pumped to see the drivers race past Chicago’s famous landmarks like Buckingham Fountain, showcasing the city in a whole new way. There is no doubt that the race can be a significant boost for the city’s economy, attracting even more visitors and income than usual.
Potential negative impact on local attractions/businesses
The Shedd Aquarium, for example, is expected to lose up to $3 million due to road closures related to the NASCAR Street Race, according to NBC Chicago. This is a major blow to the popular landmark, which sees up to 10,000 visitors a day in the summer.
With set-up and removal of the run expected to take around 10 days, the aquarium is bracing for a significant drop in visitor numbers on what is normally the busiest weekend of the year.
Impact on tourist destinations
This is not just a concern for the aquarium either. The closures could also affect other tourist destinations in the area, reducing revenue and potentially disrupting summer camp programs.
While NASCAR has stated that visitors will still have access to the museums, the extent of the closures and their impact on the area will not be fully known until plans are finalized.
See this: 2023 Illinois Resident Free Days at Shedd Aquarium
Despite the negative impact the NASCAR Street Race could have on some of Chicago’s businesses and tourist destinations (such as the Shedd Aquarium), the race could be a big win for promoting the other city. It can serve as a significant boost to the city’s economy and bring in even more visitors and revenue than usual.
It’s all about finding a balance and making sure everyone benefits from this exciting new addition to Chicago’s summer calendar. NASCAR’s Chicago race will take place on July 1 and 2, 2023.
[h/t NBC Chicago]
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