Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Oprah to Shut Down Michigan Avenue for 2 1/2 days

We all love Oprah . . . but are they nuts? What city bureaucrat signed off on shutting down Michigan Avenue, one of the busiest streets in the city, for two and a half days so that Winfrey can tape the opening show of her 24th season at Michigan and Ohio? An hour or two, okay. The better part of a morning, maybe. But shutting down Michigan Avenue, all the way from Wacker to Ohio, from midnight on Monday the 7th through 5 a.m. the following Wednesday, the 9th is . . . what's the word? Insane.

16 comments:

Third Generation Chicago Native said...

As if that stretch of road isn't bad enough. I thought she loved Chicago, then why would she do something like this?

Anonymous said...

Well it is Labor Day, so traffic won't be like the normal Monday. But still....

Pete said...

If there was any doubt left over who matters most in Chicago - the power brokers or everyday citizens - this news lays that doubt to rest.

Tamale Chica said...

I agree. This will be very disruptive for the people who work in the area and who need to conduct businesses in the area, much less anyone who lives there or needs to walk through there.

Anonymous said...

C'mon people, it's two days out of the year. Originally we were going to do the show someplace other than Chicago. Would you rather that be the case? Instead we are pouring tons of money and entertainment into the area. So traffic will have to be re routed and you wont get to park in your normal garage for two days. LA and NY have way more interruptions like this due to taping and shoots, and people shrug it off and go about their business. If you want big things to happen in the city, like celebrity shows and the olympics, you better be ready for a little inconvenience.

Pete, your comment is offensive. If you had any idea (and I have an exact number) of how much money Oprah is pouring into keeping the season open here and paying for the Black Eyed Peas to perform as well as everything else, all for free for the public, you might not be so flippant. This party is for those everyday citizens that you so arrogantly claim don't matter. If there is anyone who appreciates and understands where they are do to the average Chicagoan, its Oprah Winfrey.

Lynn Becker said...

Dear arrogant snot:

I've reread you post several times and distilled it down to its essence:

we give you lots of money. shut up and worship us.

pure b.s.

recently Letterman had Paul McCartney do a concert from atop the Ed Sullivan theater marque. He is, of course, no Oprah, only a Beatle, but Broadway was jammed with people. I don't remember anything about New York shutting down Broadway for three days to do a 90 minute taping.

every hear of The Dark Knight? want to name me one major Chicago artery that was shut down for close to three days straight for filming?

ever hear of pre-fab?

you do it not because you have to, but because you can.

I really hope you're not very high up in Oprah's organization, because you ooze contempt for the city that helped make her a star.

Anonymous said...

On the contrary, no one ever said "we give you lots of money, shut up and worship us", talk about hyperbole. Oprah is trying to do something nice to thank Chicago. If you want to distort that into she does it because she gets a kick out of exerting power, oozing contempt, spiting in the faces, bla bla, well then points are probably lost on you anyway.

Your dark knight reference is only partly true. If they could have shut down lower wacker they would have, but since its considered an emergency road, its unlawful to do so. And the roads they could close off, like Lake St, you bet you they did.

I love this city, regardless of your accusations, of being an arrogant snot.

Lynn Becker said...

to suggest that Lake streeet under the L is comparable the Mag Mile is laughable.

it's also unimaginable that, say, Michael Bloomberg, would have allowed Broadway to be shut down for two and a half days in this way.

exactly what takes two and a half days to set this up?

Anonymous said...

I'm not a fan of Oprah's, but I have no problems with this at all. As others have said - streets are regularly closed for dozens of parades, filming, street festivals, Farmer's Markets, the Marathon, Lollapaloza, Toys for Tots Motorcycle Parade, Taste of Chicago, etc.

It's part of living in a real city - quit whining and plan a different route to get where you're going. Besides, most of the people whining about it won't be within miles of the area on the days it happens.

Lynn Becker said...

Streets are not closed for days for parades. Taste of Chicago and Lollapalooza are major Chicago festivals, not photo-ops for a single mega-celebrity with insider's clout.

Anonymous said...

Assuming they pay to close the streets (like developers have to for removing cranes, etc.), who cares? The city will benefit financially and from the publicity, and the Mag Mile will be safe for pedestrians for a few days.

Michael said...

Maybe by the second day, there will be anti-Oprah riots that will sweep Daley from power.

Matt said...

"You want big things to happen in the city, like celebrity shows and the olympics, you better be ready for a little inconvenience."

You can keep your Olympics and big celebrity shows. Thank you.

Graeme said...

It's not really shut down, it's just closed off to vehicular traffic? That sounds like a good thing to me, we'll get lots of opportunities to see if it affects shopping or pedestrian attitudes. Sounds like a fun experiment. Inconvenient, but fun.

Renee said...

For someone like me who was recently injured and can barely walk, let alone go up and down stairs this is a BIG deal. For weeks, I have been dropped off in the morning and picked up in the evening. I have no idea how I will get home this evening, especially since foot traffic will also be blocked. This is no slight inconvenience for me or, for that matter, any of the other handicapped people in our building.

Ricky said...

Closing a street for a movie may be necessary. Closing a street for over 2 days for the taping of Oprah is just a whim of Oprah's and is very different. But you don't dare cross Oprah. Ask Hermes in Paris. What Oprah wants, Oprah gets.