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*** UPDATED x1 *** More reopening news: Rosemont’s convention center to resume hosting shows in July

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

* Press release…

The Donald E. Stephens Convention and Conference Center in Rosemont announced today that they will resume hosting trade shows and public events in July of this year. The announcement follows news that the Auto Show will return to Chicago this summer.
“The Stephens Convention Center is a major economic engine not only for our community but for the State of Illinois,” said Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens. “This one facility is responsible for $800 million in annual economic impact through everything from hotel stays and restaurant receipts to retail and even gasoline sales.”

The Donald E. Stephens Convention and Conference Center is among the largest such facilities in the United States. Staff and management are prepared to reopen with the health and safety of attendees at the top of mind. The Convention Center will be accredited by the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) by the time shows resume. Considered the gold standard in the industry, GBAC accreditation is given to facilities that have established certain cleaning and disinfecting protocols that are carried out by highly trained professionals.

“The health and safety of our attendees is our highest priority,” said Convention Center Executive Director Chris Stephens. “We closely track and follow all best practices and guidance from the CDC and the Illinois Department of Public Health.”

Approximately 30 trade shows and public events are tentatively scheduled between July and the end of the year. With close to 1 million square feet available for shows and events, there is ample space for a limited return to events.

Before the pandemic, the Donald E. Stephens Convention and Conference Center hosted around 70 trade shows and 250 meetings and social events per year. Those shows historically bring as many as 1.5 million people to the region.

“We’re excited to take another step towards normal,” said Mayor Brad Stephens. “It’s good for Rosemont and it’s good for Illinois.”

*** UPDATE *** Another one…

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Southern Skeptic - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 2:44 pm:

    So do I. Look forward to getting my employees back in the office.

  2. - Jose Abreu's Next Homer - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 2:54 pm:

    Heading into my riverside plaza office tomorrow for the first time since end of February 2020. Yes!

  3. - DuPage Saint - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:09 pm:

    I wonder how many corporations will give employees the option of working remotely. And after hearing for months how suburban and ex urban real estate has exploded with buyers should we all prepare for a real estate crash in those markets as everyone heads back to cities to work?/S

  4. - Ed Equity - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:12 pm:

    Science. Finally.

  5. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:13 pm:

    === Science. Finally.===

    Narrator: Vaccines.

  6. - L.A. - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:21 pm:

    Umm, I worked from home for two months, back in April and May of 2020. Been full time at the office ever since. And so has most of the staff at my office. Other than those two months, there has been no other option but to work from the office. Private company, made no other option to work remotely.

  7. - Cool Papa Bell - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:21 pm:

    Guessing for those who can, many offices will offer a four in and one out week or something like that.

    Just remember when all the talk gets going about the end of working from home - some of us went IN to work everyday since last March.

  8. - Steve - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:33 pm:

    My company (software) surveyed us and 95% did not want to return to the office 5 days per week. We are closing satellite offices and going to much more flexible workplace options. And they’re still not planning to open offices until after Labor Day

  9. - Pundent - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:34 pm:

    The challenge for anyone working downtown are the logistics that you’ll have to go through to actually get into the office. That means getting back on crowded L cars and busses, capacity restrictions on elevators in high rise buildings, new screening protocols and workplace limitations on meeting sizes and desk configurations. From personal experience a return to the office does not at all look like a return to normal.

  10. - Fav Human - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 3:37 pm:

    My firm (software also) will let us know the new policy sometime in June.

    From all indications it will be “2-3 days in office”. It may well be “2-3 days in office if you want to”

    We are not allowed in yet, and it seems like that won’t change til September.

  11. - Alice - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:04 pm:

    Any word on what the city/ state employees will be doing? I know city hall is 2 days per week but many are still home. And a few months ago the state said they were going to reevaluate all downtown leases. You send people back in full force and you kinda loose leverage in renegotiating leases.

  12. - digital innovator - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:07 pm:

    Bad decision. People will die as a result of this decision. Keep all conventions closed until there are near zero cases. Follow the science. We still have thousands of cases a day.

  13. - Jibba - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:11 pm:

    It’s great to plan and be optimistic, but opening depends on continued vaccination and approaching herd immunity. I’d be promoting vaccinations if I owned a convention center or wanted my employees to return to the office.

  14. - Scott - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:11 pm:

    My sister-in-law works at Allstate in Northbrook. They gave a bunch of employees there the option for “hybrid” (some in-office, some at home) or fully at-home going forward. She chose fully at-home and I’d imagine a lot of others are doing the same.

  15. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:30 pm:

    ==until there are near zero cases.==

    That is never going to happen. Never. Covid is here to stay in some form or another for the rest of our lives. Saying it has to be zero means life never goes back to normal.

  16. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:37 pm:

    Our office is going to give people the option to continue to work remotely on a permanent basis.

  17. - cermak_rd - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:41 pm:

    I agree saying cases have to be near 0 means we are limited in living our lives by vaccine deniers on the one hand and eager but unable to get to a facility (work, childcare etc) on the other. I think we can reach a large part of that second lot in the next few months as we add in the small neighborhood clinic model (or vaxmobiles). The first group does not want help. Fortunately in our state a lot of that lot is physically located in different parts of the state than the vacced so there won’t be huge overlap of the populations.

    A vaccine passport would go a long way toward limiting nonsense (i.e. if you have been vaxed you needn’t temp check, covid check etc. so you can go through an express line).

  18. - Amalia - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:48 pm:

    so glad for those in the meetings and hospitality industry. many have lost jobs. hope they get them back.

  19. - Jibba - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 4:51 pm:

    ===That is never going to happen. Never. Covid is here to stay ===

    You may be right, but it is a little early to surrender. Let’s try for herd immunity before giving up. Sadly, half of our citizenry has tried nothing and is already out of ideas.

  20. - Six Degrees of Separation - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 5:08 pm:

    From what I can tell, the larger companies are offering more remote options going forward for their employees, while some of the smaller and mom & pop operations are trying to re-herd all their cats at the office. My prediction is that the marketplace of workers will eventually make the rules, and the companies that are inflexible will either have to pay their employees more, or adapt to the times. Several here have quipped that COVID only accelerated a trend that was happening anyway.

  21. - EssentialStateEmployeeFromChatham - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 5:14 pm:

    ==Any word on what the city/ state employees will be doing?==

    All Secretary of State Employees went back to the office entirely on June 1 last year. Immediately after the stay at home orders ended.

  22. - Pundent - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 5:25 pm:

    = Several here have quipped that COVID only accelerated a trend that was happening anyway.=

    Covid has and will continue to reshape the labor market. Unlike the last recession which caused some older workers to stay in the workforce a few additional years after the market collapse, Covid may have the opposite effect. Retirement portfolios have grown and in some instances substantially. With a healthy nest egg and reduced desire to go back to the daily grind we’re now seeing more retirements. At the same time younger workers are starting to set clear expectations on what they want their work life balance to look like and whether that means fully remote or hybrid work arrangements. And companies are revisiting their physical footprints, many of which relied on tightly configured “hotel” spaces, in the face of significant spending to allow for social distancing. Lots of competing forces at play but as noted many that were already in motion to some extent.

  23. - JB13 - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 5:31 pm:

    If you are fully vaccinated, and you are still too afraid of the unmasked and u vaccinated to venture out, you may believe in something, but science ain’t it

  24. - Pundent - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 6:05 pm:

    =you may believe in something, but science ain’t it=

    Being vaccinated and achieving herd immunity are two different things. If we only get to a vaccination level of around 50-60% that won’t be herd immunity. I might not be comfortable in being in a crowded space at those vaccine levels. You might be and I wouldn’t keep you from doing what you feel comfortable with. But that will be little consolation to the business owner who can’t survive with a decent chunk of the population opting out. You can’t demand people to stay home but you also can’t order them to go out. Herd immunity is the only path to normalcy and it’s a narrow one at that.

  25. - tea_and_honey - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 6:11 pm:

    My employer is insisting on a 100% return to five days a week in the office starting no later than July 1 (you can go back earlier if you want). As a result we are already starting to see people leave for other opportunities that allow for hybrid or fully work from home arrangements. My division alone had four resignations this week.

  26. - PublicServant - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 7:55 pm:

    Businesses don’t hire employees because they’re philanthropic. Good employees negotiate their terms. If employers think they can dictate terms, then they’ll become examples of a rapidly fading, and long overdue, past. Three days in, two days at home will allow the home/work balance that has been sorely lacking since 1980 for two income families. And, by the way, those two income families are a necessity for any family to achieve the middle class nowadays. Thanks income inequality.

  27. - Manchester - Tuesday, May 4, 21 @ 8:25 pm:

    I hope we don’t come to regret these decisions. The anti vaccine idiots worry me that the proliferation of variants will overwhelm the vaccine immunity. I’d sure feel better if more people got vaccinated. Still I agree that we have to start getting back to something approaching normal.

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