Chicago to Host NATO Summit, but Not G-8

March 05, 2012

Chicago real estate residents and business owners have been preparing for the upcoming NATO and G-8 summits that were scheduled to come to Chicago in May along with thousands of protesters.

Many groups had already registered for permits to demonstrate in downtown Chicago during the summits.

Looks like some of the heat is off.

The White House on Monday announced that the G-8 summit will now be held at Camp David, and not in the city of Chicago.

“In May, the United States looks forward to hosting the G-8 and NATO Summits. To facilitate a free-flowing discussion with our close G-8 partners, the president is inviting his fellow G-8 leaders to Camp David on May 18-19 for the G-8 Summit, which will address a broad range of economic, political and security issues,” read a White House statement.

“The president will then welcome NATO allies and partners to his hometown of Chicago for the NATO Summit on May 20-21, which will be the premier opportunity this year for the president to continue his efforts to strengthen NATO in order to ensure that the Atlantic Alliance remains the most successful alliance in history, while charting the way forward in Afghanistan.”

The 38th G-8 summit was going to be held at McCormick Place in Chicago, the first U.S. location since 2004. More than 2,000 foreign dignitaries from the world’s largest economies come together to discuss global issues at the summit.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) meeting was set to be held in Chicago during the same time.

It would have been the first time since 1977 that the G-8 and NATO summits were to be held in the same city at the same time.

Tens of thousands of demonstrators were expected, and security was set to be extra high throughout the month of May.

Some businesses questioned whether they should close during the summits for safety reasons. The Apartment Building Owners and Managers’ Association of Chicago has been training building managers on how to handle riots, protests, tear gas and bomb threats.

Other businesses saw the increase in traffic as a boost for our local economy.

We lost the G-8 summit. This will still be the first time the NATO summit has been in an American city other than Washington, and it will still draw protesters and spenders alike, just not as many as the two summits combined.

Seems like a good happy medium to me.

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