Sink or swim: We have a splashy solution for the Thompson Center
Waterpark could plug leak in state budget
As a bill allowing the state to “dispose” of the iconic, love-it-or-hate-it James R. Thompson Center through a competitive bidding process has landed on the desk of new Gov. J.B. Pritzker, a Twitter thread started by our own Scott Kennedy has quickly picked up, ahem, steam.
Kennedy suggests the 16-story Helmut Jahn-designed glass building, located on the 100 W. block of Randolph in downtown Chicago, is an ideal space for a waterpark, a so-called #DowntownOasis.
Why, you ask? A few of Scott's reasons:
✓ It’s big enough for indoor waterslides
✓ Pre-built stairs and elevators allow patrons get to the top of the 16 floors
✓ A built-in food court is already housed in the facility
✓ Public transportation stops inside the building
✓ Nearby hotels & parking
✓ Nearby amenities
✓ Plenty of operational & office space
✓ Already has water flowing through it at times
Deputy Gov. Dan Hynes told Crain’s last week that the Pritzker administration is “serious about selling” the Thompson Center, which houses more than 50 state boards and agencies, and moving employees across the street to the Michael A. Bilandic building. Stay tuned.
The Center for Illinois Politics is dedicated to providing clear, fact-based information that empowers you and encourages you to be active in politics. But we also like to have some fun from time to time. Look forward to our actual analysis of Gov. Pritzker's proposed budget soon.
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